The Curious Blog

curious by both definitions

My sister gifted me a signed(!) copy of Jen Sincero’s You Are a Badass for Christmas a couple years back and finally, after a false start or two, I recently finished it. I should note that my hot-and-cold behavior toward the book had nothing to do with the material itself. I'm just a finicky reader. I didn't read with the express intent of providing a comprehensive review, but I do have some points I'd like to share about my reading experience.

I suppose the most important question might be whether I recommend the book, and I definitely DO.

Jen Sincero’s work feels like a solid gateway into the world of self-help literature

Although initially averse to the informal tone of the text, I became used to it quickly and now appreciate how a conversational voice suits the subject matter. I realize, now, more formal diction could have felt pedantic or made the advice given feel unpalatable.

Two things to keep in mind when considering whether to pick up (or download) this work---

The first is that relatively early in the book, Sincero calls on the reader to concede that there is some sort of divine energy guiding the events of our lives, whether this is called God, the Universe, Source Energy, etc.

This task was easy for me because that's already how I naturally feel, but I realize not everyone will find this request so simple. Sincero notes, also, that most personal growth books assert some kind of faith-based confidence, so finding a work that avoids this may prove difficult.

The second point is that the author consistently uses weight loss as a cited goal example alongside major life changes such as falling in love or changing jobs. I initially read malice into this, but in retrospect I see my bias was distorting the information being given, and all in all I believe in Jen Sincero's positive intentions.

Either way, I wanted to note this in case someone with a similar sensitivity is interested in reading. In the end, of course, it's up to you to decide whether this might detract too much from the positive aspects of the work.

The parts of You Are a Badass near the beginning and end were personally the most eye-opening.

Sincero's early analysis of why so many of us feel some kind of insidious 'lack' in our lives deeply comforted me

It's a similar validation as the assertion that clinical anxiety and depression have a more simple and logical cause than something like a personality flaw.

Points made around the middle of the book felt a bit obvious, but I think my perspective was skewed because I’ve been working for a while on adjusting my thoughts and bringing my self-talk to a more affirming place. I can easily see how years or even months ago these same points would have felt more revelatory.

I wasn't sure what to expect when I started reading You Are a Badass, as it was my first foray into the self-help world. Perhaps I was expecting a series of intense epiphanies, a type of boot camp for the psyche. Instead, the experience I had with this book felt like walking down a forest path and uncovering a pocket-full of small, precious gems. There are definitely bits of insight from this book I will carry forward with me indefinitely, especially concerning time and money (which makes me curious about the author's book entitled You Are a Badass at Making Money.)

Sincero delivers her wisdom with warmth and many concrete examples from her life to illustrate her points. As I read, I definitely felt like I was learning from someone who practiced their sermon.

The true testament of this book's effectiveness is that it prompted me to start my blog after months of hesitation

I still have a lot to learn about blogging, writing, and life as a whole, but that will always be true. I am at least now taking a more active role in creating the life I want, and for that reason, I do in fact feel some badassery starting to bloom. ♥

Over the past few months I have pulled four tarot cards, and the results have been encouraging and validating. I did not have to reach far to see how the cards related directly to my life. I'm a complete beginner when it comes to reading tarot, so I thought I'd document my thoughts so far, and most likely future developments as well.

The first interesting point about these cards is that three of the four were Major Arcana. In a 78-card deck, there are only 22 of these.

Major Arcana deal with fated events, as opposed to the day-to-day significance of Minor Arcana

I pulled the Justice card soon after a job interview, the card of cause and effect, unbiased judgement, and the logical decision-making process of the law. This card told me that whatever the outcome of the interview, it would be the right path for me.

I didn’t get the job, which was disappointing, but at the same time I realized starting a new career just as I was moving into a new apartment would have been too much to handle. Also, without a more stressful nine-to-five, I'd have more energy for personal work dealing with my novel and blog. With the help of Justice, I accepted the rejection more easily than I would have in the past, although I still plan on getting a new job after other things in my life settle down.


A couple weeks later, out of nowhere, I had the feeling it was time to pull another card. As before, I shuffled with care until it felt ‘right’ to draw. It’s hard to describe how I decide when it’s time to draw. I just pause in my shuffling and focus on the deck in front of me. I suppose simply tap into my intuition until I get a ‘gut feeling’ of a yes or no, although when it’s time to draw I feel it more in the center of my chest.

The second card was the High Priestess. It immediately felt important, of course, but I didn’t know what it meant. It turns out this card signifies that, should a person be working to develop their intuitive gifts (as I clearly am), they are on the right track. It’s a sign to keep learning and trusting yourself.

I didn’t know it at the time, but I happened to draw this card on the day I found and applied to the apartment I'm writing from right now. I wasn’t planning on looking at places that day, but my realtor texted me out of the blue saying he was free. I was unusually tired that day, but I had the feeling I needed to accept his offer. ‘What if this is the day I find the perfect place?’ I asked myself. I knew I couldn’t pass up the opportunity. To say I’m glad about this choice would be a massive understatement.

The intuitive work I did that day changed my life entirely

The third card came to me in a different way than the previous two. My first night in my new place, I sat on the edge of my bed and shuffled the cards. I fumbled a bit with the deck and a single card fell to the floor, face-down. I knew immediately this was the one I was supposed to read. It wanted to be seen.

The card that showed itself to me that night was the Ace of Rods (otherwise known as Wands). This card is not one of the Major Arcana, but all aces are highly significant and manifest themselves often at a time of new beginnings. An ace is always a sign of huge potential for growth; it's a seed representing the most unadulterated energy of whatever suit it belongs to.

Upon research, I found some words associated with Wands to be intuition, communication, spring, inspiration, fire, and energy. The Ace of Wands calls one to follow their gut and take on a new, approaching challenge. It inspires creativity, courage, and confidence.

This card felt especially important and encouraging to me. I had just gotten myself out of an extremely stifling living situation where I felt stunted physically, mentally, and emotionally. The Ace of Wands told me that, with this new freedom, my creative energy would blossom and I would soon be producing more writing, and work of a higher caliber.

I should note I have been in my apartment less than a month and even with more peripheral creative outlets of mine, like my YouTube channel, I have felt especially inspired. I suddenly thought of a video idea I’d never considered before, which I have already written the script for. I feel my poetry is getting stronger as well. I recently re-worked an older piece and it feels more layered and nuanced. There’s a kind of maturity to the phrasing that wasn’t there before. I cannot wait to see how this new space continues to nurture my creative potential.


The fourth card and third Major Arcana, the Moon, is the most recent card I’ve pulled. I was showing a friend my cards and briefly touching on some of the points I planned on making in this post, when I impulsively drew the card at the top of the deck. It is interesting to consider that this draw was done without really thinking about it.

The Moon primarily represents the subconscious

The Moon also signifies illusions— it tells you things may not be what they seem. I believe this card is telling me to see past some idealistic thinking I may have about my new apartment and the writing that will take place here. I need to remember that this new work will not just appear on the page by some thoughtless flow. This will still be a lot of difficult work, a lot of time and energy spent.

It makes sense to me, also, that the Moon can represent fear being injected into a person’s present and future. Creeping up behind my recent hope and excitement, an insecurity about my writing has been looming as well, sometimes overpowering my positive feelings entirely. I’ve been dwelling on the new pressure I’m under now that I don’t have the ‘excuse’ of my previous environment holding me back. My confidence in my ideas and skills have recently been shakier than in many months prior, which has definitely been an unsettling contrast to the purely optimistic attitude of a few weeks prior.

These four cards come together to create a unified picture and road map

These cards tell me that in this new beginning I possess enormous potential for growth and progression in my personal and creative life. During this time, I am called to recognize the invalidity of my fears and follow my intuition, whose strength I am doing well to develop, and should continue doing so. What is meant to happen, will happen, if I am willing to push forward wholeheartedly into the projects that inspire my passion, and stay courageous as I follow this fated path.

Until next time, loves, I hope you stay curious.

I'm currently reading You Are A Badass by (you guessed it) Jen Sincero. In chapter 18 she lists tips to help stop procrastination-- something I'm all too adept at. Number 1 reads, Remember That Done Is Better Than Perfect, and the paragraph below finishes with "... so get off your ass and get started. NOW!"

I surprised myself with how quickly I started making excuses to avoid posting today. I'd read that one should start a blog with about five posts waiting in the wings to be published on a pre-determined schedule, my mystical soul wanted to wait until the next full or new moon, etc. Thankfully, I soon recognized these thoughts as a type of hindering perfectionism-- so here I am, sleepily making my first blog post with no clue what I'm doing and only a vague idea of where I want this to go.

I believe this is a good time to start this blog because I can tell many things are about to change for me. This next year is going to be eventful and evolutionary, and I feel this blog will be a great outlet to reflect on and process these changes while connecting with people online. I'm working on mindfulness and assertiveness-- so instead of hoping for growth, I've decided I will make it happen.

I see myself possibly using this space to address lgbtq+, mental health, and body-positive issues, plus-size fashion, creative writing, and witchy/spiritual topics such as psychic readings, tarot, and astrology. If any of these things interest you, I'd deeply appreciate you joining me for the ride. As implied earlier, I don't have a second post tucked away in my back pocket, so a comment letting me know what you'd like to see would really help me out.

Thank you so much for reading.

Stay curious, loves.

© 2021 Lee Dobecka