I’ll tell you a secret. Every time someone invites me to do something new, my immediate, no-thought gut reaction is “no.” And for a long time, that’s what my answer was too. But something happened in my teenage years, there was an internal shift that made me question why. The idea of limiting myself simply because of fear of the unknown seemed as downright wrong to me as the sky being orange.
So now, instead of listening to that gut “no” feeling, I always try and take a step back and ask myself why.
Do I not want to do this because I think I am not capable?
Do I think I won’t have fun?
Or do I really, truly, believe that it sounds like a terrible/dangerous/miserable idea?
If the last is true, typically I’ll stick with the “no.” But in the case of the first two, I always try and say yes. Even if it downright terrifies me.
This is how I got started canyoneering, this is how I sky-dived, bungee jumped, and joined Crossfit. This is how most of the amazing things in life have come into my world view, and taking chances has, over the years, become a true part of who I am. Granted, not all of these things has ended up a love – scuba diving, for instance – but I would have never known that I get panic attacks underwater if I hadn’t tried.
But this can also be applied to normal, every day activities. From trying a new food to going on a job interview, if I am interested enough to think about it, I always feel like I should give it a chance. Early in our relationship, Neil looked at me and told me that I intimidated him. Had he not taken a chance on me, our world(s) would certainly be a less colorful place. When we married, our vows ended in the phrase “to celebrate life together, forevermore.”
And by taking chances, pushing ourselves past our comfort zones, and in turn – figuring out some of the more incredible ways of living life – I believe we are absolutely, positively, fulfilling our vows.
Life is a scary ride. Find out how to enjoy it for all it’s worth.