School of Badassness – Be yourself, boldly and proudly

Jenni Janakka

Jenni Janakka came to talk about the School of Badassness on Waffle Wednesday, September 25th 2019. She is the author of a book called Röyhkeyskoulu (School of Badassness), which was published in January 2019. The idea of the book came from a discussion during a meeting in 2017. During that meeting Jenni’s colleagues downgraded their actions and themselves. She did not like the way these people presented and talked about themselves or their actions, because she knew these people and knew they were good at their work. It was then she realized that more badassness was needed.

How do we see ourselves?

Life is full of hassle and there are many things that are constantly on our minds. We are surrounded by a variety of devices, applications and offers, as well as tasks and relationships to handle. All of these things constantly need our attention and therefore, we must be as clear as possible with our communication to give the right image of ourselves without downgrading ourselves or our actions.

During Waffle Wednesday we did an exercise where small groups of 2-3 people discuss what you are good at and what you’re especially good at. Often, after the task, people say that the task was difficult. However, this is not always the case, as 13-19 year olds find such a task exciting. People of that age think a lot about what they are, what they are good at and whether they are enough. In a few years, such thinking will stop and life will happen. We are no longer the same person, so how we see ourselves should be rethought.

However, thinking alone is not enough but it is also important to say out loud what you are good at, but why is it so difficult? Often we have in our mind that we should not share our knowledge and sharing creates a sense of shame. It should be remembered that sharing your own skills can lead to good and your own skills are not just yours. Perhaps there is someone who needs your knowledge or a person who is also good at the same skills. This gives you the opportunity to improve and learn from other people.

Impact of stereotypes

How we see ourselves is influenced by many things, such as different stigmas and stereotypes. These stamps and stereotypes again prevent you from being what you truly are. For example, Jenni herself is a blonde and has dyslexia. These stamps defined her in the eyes of others and influenced her self-image. However, different stamps must be forgotten if you want to be completely yourself and achieve things in life that you really like and are interested in.

Stereotypes also have an effect on how we see other people. Our minds create the first impression and it is born very quickly, but can go really wrong because of our own stereotypes. It is good to be aware of that and pay attention to it. One should strive to be open-minded and see people as themselves, not as stereotypes.

How your life and career should go?

Often, success stories are presented in such a way that each choice has followed a certain linear road and led to the goal that has been achieved. Adopting such a “life is the road” mindset fools us, because the road does not really exist. This way of thinking only prevents us from taking steps in life, making decisions and changing the direction of our lives when needed.

There is also no other reason why we should not take steps in our lives and go towards our dreams. In any case, bad things will happen in life, whether we do what we want or not. So we can just keep taking steps in our lives and not to be stressed out too much.

Pay attention to your way of thinking:
  • Think about what you are good at and especially good at? Dare to say these things out loud and be proud of them!
  • Do some stamps affect you? Do they prevent you from being yourself? Forget them and be truly yourself!
  • Do you have some stereotypes? If so, stop them and be open-minded.
  • Do you think that life is like a road and everything should go in a certain order? Stop this kind of thinking, it will stop you from making decisions and changing the direction of your life if necessary!
  • What would you do if you knew you will be successful? Do it, even if you don’t succeed. Bad things happen in life anyway, whether you go towards your dreams or not.
  • Additionally, emotions have an effect on the body, so pay attention to them. Respect and take care of your body!