Risk…the craziness.

Risk is a 4 letter word that should be repeated daily and acted upon regularly.

I’m at a crossroads. And I know others who are facing a major decision, two or three.

The odds are both against me and for me at this point in my life.

The choice of playing small in what appears safe vs. taking the risk of going BIG. 

I started writing this as I prepared for a job interview.

Depending on who you ask in my life, the support from others is both for and against it; the decision comes down to the trust I have in “me” to NOT stay in a vicious circle of playing small.

I’m desperate in circumstances, but not in who I am and what I want for myself.

As for the job, it’s symbolic. I know what will be required of me. I’ll be busy more than 40 hours a week, not doing what I love; it’ll create an imbalance in my life and put my goals on hold. Income is the bait, will I bite? 

The job is not my career path or in my life goals.

It requires a sacrifice of my business.

It’ll be the culmination of my work over the past few years; gone, given up. It means the newest branch of my business will never see the light of day. It’s a major opportunity lost.

Do I stay with my newest “just about to launch”product, which has garnered professional interest by a couple of parties OR commit to something that says, “I give up on my dream.” Does it mean the term, “Safe, but sorry?”

The immediate gratification of a paycheck will be lost, when I stand in this place again in a year, two or three, because I made a short term choice. I’ll be older, full of more regret and excuses to immobilize me; will I be wiser?

The thing is “risk,” is calling my name.

And as crazy, and I mean crazy as it sounds right now, it’s what my soul is leaning toward. I’m in the process of losing almost everything; the stress of major life issues converging at once has placed me at the crossroads.

And that is the kicker.

I almost don’t care about the loss.

Playing small has worn on me.

Taking the safe route is a soul killer, because the someday you think the stars will align and everything will be perfect, so you can take your leap of faith, never comes.

You have to make IT happen.

When a client or friend, says the word, “someday,” to me; I’ve to stop myself from screaming, “Don’t be afraid, do it now!” We feed ourselves so many excuses to play small. We’re afraid of our own success, unless it accidentally happens to us.

And I don’t mean success suffering at a job you hate, or a relationship that keeps you down.

Please don’t tell me that suffering like a martyr toward a someday fantasy, will pay off in a reward. It may in what you learn, but there’s no reward in “staying stuck.”

What I mean is doing what YOU love and achieving that fulfillment.

No one is going to stand on a corner in Hollywood in front of a drugstore, where some dude walks up and says, “Hey, I can make you a movie star,” and *poof* you’re rich and famous. No, you gotta commit, work at it and take uncomfortable steps beyond your own limitations to make it happen.

And when all circumstances around you are telling you to quit and give up the dream, that is when you have to dig deeper.

In my case, I wake up some days, with the demons in my head. One of my friends has listened to my morning venting, she tells me I’ve a habit of talking, clearing it out and then I move on through the rest of my day–focused on the goal. I’m thankful she’s there.

When I get stuck, I ask myself, “If I give up now, how will I feel?” 

And then I push the courage button, “Okay, let’s go, bring it on!” I’m not hiding out, I can and will get through “this time.” As a friend said, “It is only a moment in time.”

I look at people who failed not just once, but several times, such as Walt Disney, Henry Ford, Mr.Macy and the guy who owns Tom’s Shoes.

When I’m older, do I want to look back at a mundane existence or instead, see the adventure, the experiences, the learning and fulfillment I received as I lived from my heart and soul?

If life is not about experiences, what is it?

We are afraid of the “what if.” 

Fear can make you decide against yourself.

Every time.

It’s clever in its disguise. The words practical, “the right thing,” secure, selfless, confusion, sacrifice and others, actually mean fear. Telling yourself that it isn’t fear, so you don’t feel like you’re giving up, is flat out being dishonest with yourself.

At least if you’re going to use the words above, just admit to yourself that you’re afraid. It’s much easier, to see it “truthfully,” no matter what you decide. And at least knowing it is FEAR that rules your decisions, you won’t feel as bad or maybe it’ll spur you on to take a crazy risk.

Emotional risk is where it’s at, financial risk is just the diving board.

Taking risk is having faith in yourself and a greater power that YOU DESERVE happiness, fulfillment, success and other emotional benefits.

It’s how you feel through your life that matters; when you feel courageous breaking through your own barriers of what you believe you can do….its when the “living” starts.

I know what I’m gonna do, I’m on the diving board. How about you?



Letting go, when you can’t

Letting go is very difficult for us humans.

Whether it’s a person, perception, job, or treasured item; letting go brings on the greatest unrest inside of us.

We create our biggest struggles when we work against life; we fear change/disappointment can eat us alive! 

We’ll sacrifice the good to hold onto something, which causes us pain or we’ve outgrown.

We give excuses to ourselves and the world that what we’re doing has some hidden merit.

Thank you Ghandi or Mother Theresa; they were selfless toward a greater good. For most of us, our struggles aren’t about a greater good, they’re about fear.

We find ourselves trying to cobble the hole in the shoe, rather than get a new pair.

Not letting go looks something like this:

  • Settling in a “good-enough” love relationship, when you have different life goals. As in, wanting to get married, have kids, live in Timbuktu or give up your worldly possessions to be a missionary.
  • Holding onto your crappy job out of fear that you’ll not find another.
  • A perception that’s negative about the opposite sex, yet you want to meet someone and get married.
  • Entering a relationship that kicks your ass, you white knuckle it, yet it’s killing you to stay.
  • Believing in your perception of the potential for another person to change.
  • Unable to change your external circumstances that create suffering and battling with life.
  • Giving up your happiness to HIDE in a dead relationship for your children, dog, house, etc…
  • Staying anywhere, because of the belief that you’ll heal another person, your childhood, heart or soul, by sacrificing YOU.

It can be insidious, and you can’t see another way to live, BUT, there is, first you “Accept,” and then “Have the Courage”!

The unknown isn’t to be feared, it’s to be embraced. Staying stuck, is far more painful than releasing yourself from bondage.

Accepting “what is,” stops your internal battle.

It’s not about forcing circumstances; it’s having the courage to blaze a new path.

It’s not easy to decide to accept “it all.” Make babysteps toward acceptance.

Steps to freedom:

  • Give up your deepest wants and desires to appease another, won’t get you what you want. Accept where the other is in their life; are you settling if you stay?
  • Holding onto a job you dread going to on Monday by Saturday, isn’t going to improve. Why do you stay, what’s the fear in leaving? DO you believe you’re unworthy of better? Maybe it won’t be easy to find something else, but doors of opportunity eventually open when you’ve courage.
  • Negative generalizing of the opposite sex, because of your past experiences, only sets you up for more. No one comes along and changes how you view yourself.  It’s about you, not them. You’re here, because of what you believe is true for you. Start accepting some painful truths about “your responsibility” for your love life, stop blaming and take action toward vulnerability, watch your perception change.
  • You’re magnetized to a relationship that’s a rollercoaster and the voices in your head say LEAVE, but you can’t. Kicking yourself, complaining and losing your mind. STOP. Accept the situation, accept you can’t leave and LOOK inside. Why are you here? Is it the disappointment of failure? You need it to work so you’re worthy of love? What is it? Dive into your vat of pain. It’ll reveal the truth.
  • If only he/she would do this, everything would be hunky dory. Yeah, this selfish viewpoint, excludes honoring where another is in their life. They need to fit our vision of perfection. Accept them right where they are, can you handle this dented pinto or are you settling by staying? Have the courage to make a decision. STOP fixing that person. Where do they mirror you in a matching insecurity? Perceived flaw?
  • It’s white flag time, when nothing is working in your life. A pattern? How much can you control? What action will move you toward believing a new direction is possible? When you get past the ego and “poor me,” there’s a flicker of a light at the end of the tunnel.
  • Wannabe Ghandis and Mother Theresas take note. Giving up your happiness to stay in a crappy situation does NOT benefit those you think it’s helping. You’re setting an example to your kids of sacrificing yourself. Do you want them to repeat what you’re doing or it’s extreme opposite? Do you want them to grow up and be happy, functioning adults? Who are you trying to get approval from? Why? Will it make you a good person and the parent you never had? No…you’re okay NOW! Stop acting out your childhood, honor your needs and your kids. Stop trying to fix your past. Accept what is and have courage.
  • The moment of regret will come for the amazing things you let slip by. If you talked yourself into believing suffering instead of risk, is the right course to take; it’s fear in disguise. Life without emotional risk, is a life of regret. Staying in things that died or hoping for past good moments to reappear is a waste of time. Look within for “why you stay.” Are you afraid of being alone if you jump, because your amazing love will discover you’re worthless? Do you not feel good enough to deserve amazing gifts and so you sabotage, make excuses and stay miserable. Accept that everything in our life has a purpose; when you’ve kicked a dead horse, let it go. Accept it’s death as an opportunity to give your life rebirth, move through your past emotionally and open to the gifts of the present.

It’s a choice to suffer with old agreements and promises you made, things change and what you thought as a kid or as a younger adult may not hold true in current circumstances. Accept your old ideas, mourn them and let em’ fly away.

Distracting yourself from your reality, whether by compartmentalizing or not dealing with your own inner unrest is NOT the way to peace and happiness. Allow the unknown–open yourself to you. Accept what you see. Release the known.

Letting go comes eventually; whether it is letting go of being stuck or letting go of the life you could’ve had if you’d lived in the courage to deserve it!