06/12/2013 11:26 am ET Updated Aug 12, 2013

Beam Me Up, Scotty (EXCERPT)

This is an excerpt from You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by, will you look at that, Jen Sincero.

My grandmother on my mother's side lived to be one hundred-years-old. Nana was as WASPy as they make 'em: Prissy, reserved, able to avoid confrontation with the skilled precision of an F-16 pilot. For as long as I can remember, she always looked exactly the same. She was eternally adorned in a cardigan, pinned together at the top by an antique broach, her pink lipstick and sparkly brown eyes shining through a face-full of wrinkles that erupted in a series of "oh dears" every time she laughed.

In her long lifetime, Nana witnessed the birthing of such pivotal human achievements as the phone, the car, the TV, human flight, the computer, the internet and rock and roll.
The two things that blew her mind the most, however, were putting a man on the moon and the soda dispensers at McDonalds.

She'd stand there watching, gripped by disbelief, as an employee placed a cup, small, medium or large, beneath a spout, pushed a button and walked away, leaving the machine to fill it up the perfect, proper amount. "How does it know where to stop?" Nana would shake her head, mortified, "How does it know?!" After we figured out how to clone a sheep, she pretty much threw in the towel on ever questioning anything again.

One day my family took her out for lunch to a restaurant on the top floor of some giant hotel. When we got into the elevator, someone accidentally pushed the button for the floor we were already on the moment the doors closed, making them open right back up again. Thinking we'd just gone up 45 flights in a split second, we watched my sweet little grandmother exit the elevator, nervously patting her hair as she wandered down the hallway muttering to herself, "Why not?"

I want to sign off here by encouraging you to pursue your dreams with the same belief that anything is possible as a little old lady in knee-high stockings and sensible heels who was born in 1903 and lived through the most technologically flabbergasting century to date.

Whatever you desire to do with your precious life -- write jokes or rock out or start a business or learn to speak Greek or quit your job or raise a bunch of kids or fall in love or lose your flab or open orphanages around the world or direct movies or save dolphins or make millions or live in a canyon in a loincloth -- believe that it's possible. And that it's available to you. And that you deserve to be/do/have it.

Why not?

Give yourself the permission and the means (yes, this includes the money), to be who you are regardless of what anybody else thinks or believes is possible. Do not deny yourself the life you want to live because you're worried you're not good enough or that you'll be judged or that it's too risky, because who does that benefit? No one, that's who. When you live your life doing the things that turn you on, that you're good at, that bring you joy, that make you shove stuff in people's faces and scream, "Check this out!!!" you walk around so lit up that you shoot sunbeams out of yer eyeballs. Which automatically lights up the world around you. Which is precisely why you are here: To shine your big-ass ball of fire onto this world of ours. A world that literally depends upon light to survive.

You are powerful. You are loved. You are surrounded by miracles. Believe, really believe that what you desire is here and available to you. And you can have it all.

Love Yourself.
You are a badass.

Published by Running Press