When I read this poem for the first time, it stopped me dead in my tracks.
“Come to the edge” the voice said softly
“No” they said it’s too high”
“Come to the edge” the voice insisted
“No” she said it’s too dangerous
“Come to the edge” the voice demanded
“No” she said “I might fall”
“Come to the edge” the voice commanded
Reluctantly, I came to the edge
He pushed me off
And I flew.
by Guillaume Apollinaire, 1870 – 1918
What touched me so deeply was how much I recognized myself in these simple words. This was exactly how I had lived for so long.
Last year I consciously decided to do things I have never done before and that felt uncomfortable: I took challenges; I looked for challenges. It began with a group of wonderful women taking a weekend trip to do zip-lining. When I saw myself on the last of five steps leading into nothing, my heart started its own concert, hammering … boom, boom, boom! All I wanted to do was run back up as fast as I could. “This is a one-way street, and there is no return. You better get on with it,” I heard someone say, and I knew I had to do it. Eventually, I gathered my courage, let go and jumped!
I flew; and I shouted in joy; I felt like a bird soaring high over Mother Earth; I felt jubilant.
Next came a live interview at “ThatChannel – Liquid Lunch” Internet TV, a hurdle I never dreamt I would pursue; it left me excited and proud: I had done it! Para-sailing in California, passing the intense NLP Practitioner Certification course, and an eight-week “Speaking Club” were next on the list. Each of these activities helped me grow in ways I could not have foreseen.
It is so much easier for us to stick with the ‘same old same old’ than to take risks; it feels comfortable like an old blanket to wrap ourselves in; nothing can go wrong, we think; why change?
Wrong! As a Virtual Assistant and business owner, I work in client relationships. My clients expect me to be the expert. Through learning and experience I have gathered the knowledge about many tools that help my clients’ productivity and growth. I am insanely curious; I want to learn more, delve deeper, and become a better partner to my clients. I need to try things, jump into the cold water and swim; sinking is no option!
We must take our hearts in hand and take risks to grow. When we overcome hesitation and fear, we climb up on the ladder of confidence, and competency, and we glow.
I have not yet decided what the next challenge will be; there are options, though, that are exciting; I am looking forward to conquering the next hurdles.
What challenges do you have and how do you overcome them? I’d love to hear from you.