From the woundings of childhood to the highs and lows of entrepreneurial adventures–plus relationship betrayals–SQUELCHED explores what it takes to find one’s authentic self, express it, and become someone who enjoys living that true self right out loud.
From an early age, Terry Beard knew he would need to make his own way in the world. Plagued by poverty in a family with ever more mouths to feed, shame was an early companion as the author of SQUELCHED went to school with lunches not deemed worthy of classmate bartering. Some teachers were kind; others seemingly insensitive to the idea that encouragement rather than silencing supports children growing into who they can become. This theme echoes well beyond school into Beard’s time with the Army, in business, overcoming health challenges, and within interpersonal relationships… with one very important lesson learned: when you don’t always get the nurturing you need from others, you have to learn to provide it for yourself. And so Beard embarks on discovering how to better know and express himself from learning to speak French as an adult to participating in Toastmasters; from figuring out how to co-create non-toxic relationships to eventually making beloved Paris — La Ville-Lumière, the city of lights and enlightenment — his second home.
For many years it is a full-time job escaping poverty, seeking approval from those unable to give it, and living up or down to the “bad boy” label placed on him in childhood. No child should witness a parent shooting the family pet nor spend most waking hours physically working to help keep the family going, though it is a sad fact children do grow up having to survive the impacts of such experiences. Beard’s story is rich with lessons gleaned such as: “Our transition from torment to mentor is our pathway and opportunity to help others conquer their personal fears.” By age 60, he has moved beyond emotionally perceiving himself as an insatiable stray, hungry dog towards being able to “relive the journey which I have taken to date, and now adjust my compass with precision.” Whereas once the number one thing Terry Beard feared, like so many people, was being called upon to stand up, speak out, be noticed…he now seeks opportunities to savor this very thing. Ending with letters of encouragement to his sons, this true life adventure is likely to make even hearts armored from the blows of life, ease.
Transcending hardship towards a life of la joie de vivre, author Terry Beard takes readers on a self-empowerment journey a bit reminiscent of Elizabeth Gilbert’s “Eat Pray Love” in SQUELCHED: SUCCEEDING IN BUSINESS AND LIFE BY FINDING YOUR VOICE.
~Cristina Salat for IndieReader