This daily #OneGoodThing was dedicated to celebrating extraordinary women I know last December. Many of the 31 bold, beautiful, brave women featured shared stories of perseverance after abuse, addiction, miscarriages, illness, and loss. They represent various fields and backgrounds, and I admire each for their passion and strength. The series was so deeply inspiring that I felt it needed to live on as a weekly feature in 2020. Each Monday, I’ll introduce you to another incredible superhero—including artists, businesswomen, union organizers, nurses, writers, teachers, movie makers, designers, reporters, and all-around badasses. It’s about finding the extraordinary in each of us!
Blair Davis, Psy.D. is a psychologist who does therapy with undergraduate and graduate students. This is a second career for her; she first worked for many years as a copy editor of medical journals and textbooks and a general interest city magazine; as a freelance editor and writer; and as the communications specialist for an environmental nonprofit agency. Blair grew up in a small town in Pennsylvania; spent her college years, 20s, and half of her 30s in Philadelphia; and then moved to California for graduate school, where she still lives. In her free time, she enjoys taking dance classes and performing, taking photos, and exploring in both nature and city neighborhoods.
1. What did you want to be “when you grew up?” When I was young, I wanted to be a writer. I did work as a freelance writer and editor for a while, but I just wasn’t talented or driven enough to make writing my main gig.
2. What makes you the most proud of yourself? I’m proud that I’ve tried to follow my own path rather than doing what I thought I should be doing or what others expected. I don’t mean to say I am a rebel or free spirit, because I’m really not—I like structure, predictability, and rules! But, my career path and personal life have not followed a traditional trajectory. This hasn’t always been easy, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to terms with my choices and that meaning and seeking happiness are more important to me than money or status. When I get down on myself in comparison to others who have things I don’t have, I remind myself how lucky I am to have been able to make the choices I have made—not everyone has that freedom.
3. What darkness have you overcome? How did you find strength? I’ve gone through some difficult times, from depression to marital problems and divorce to family illness. I’m a sensitive person, so there have been times I haven’t felt strong. Recognizing that feeling strong and being strong are two different things helps: I see strength as doing what you can to overcome a problem, asking for help when needed, and finding ways to learn from the tough times.
4. Where will we find you on a Saturday morning at 10 a.m.? I will probably be on my couch watching Netflix or YouTube videos in my jammies eating a late breakfast. Or, if I happen to have a busier Saturday than usual, I may be out running errands or on my way to a dance workshop.
5. What makes you smile the most? Meaningful time with friends and family, cute animals, beautiful visual art or dance, my favorite music, a good cup of coffee, and a good novel.
Bonus: What advice would you give your younger self? I’d tell myself that “being nice” doesn’t have to mean having poor boundaries. Being kind to and considerate of others was a value that was strongly encouraged by my family and one that I still hold. However, I’ve known people who consciously or unconsciously took advantage of that or just weren’t very mindful of my boundaries and needs. At times, that was a tough lesson to learn, and it’s one that I am still working on!
Today’s #OneGoodThing is sharing this extraordinary woman and my friend, Blair Davis, with all of you! We are stronger together, so let’s shine a light on our extraordinary sisters! If you’d like to participate or nominate a woman to participate, please send me a note or leave a comment! What was your #OneGoodThing today? Please share in the comments! Kindness is Everything.