The breaking point in my life proved to be the changing point. A few years ago I made a decision to start living. I ran across a folded copy of my ever-changing Bucket List in 2009 and it changed the way I approached everything. Until then, I had made list after list, goal after goal and was making decent progress, but my efforts were lackluster and jaded. When I stumbled across an old version of my list, I decided it was time to make some changes. The list looked almost identical to the year before’s list and the year before and the year before, etc.
We aren’t guaranteed tomorrow. You don’t have my permission to EVER tell anyone that you will do something tomorrow. Either do it today, or let them know that you will complete it when AND IF you live to see another day. And be ok with that. Because, honestly, some of those things that we promise ourselves and others we will do are things that we really don’t want to do. I’d give anything to hear someone actually respond to a request with, “You know, I really don’t think I want to do that. I mean, I can tell you I will, but at the end of the day, I know good and well that I would rather do anything else other than what you’d like me to do… ”
Which brings me to another point. Do what you love and what you like to do. No, I don’t mean quit your job to go off and start that toe-sock business you are convinced will be HUGE! Work your day job, if it’s not what you dream of doing, and do what you love outside of it (sew your nasty ass toe socks at night, when no one is looking). If that works, keep it up. If you dream of doing what you love full time, then work towards that and find a way to make it happen. It won’t be overnight, but I can guarantee you that if you do what you love on a daily basis (whether part time, or full time), the world will find a place to make what you love a constant.
So, why wasn’t I wrestling any of those items on my Bucket List to the ground? Why didn’t I have them in a sleeper hold, yelling, “Who’s your Daddy?!”
I was scared. They seemed big. Huge. Like giant filet mignons that, while delicious, seemed too big to finish. And, I was at a point in my life where going after goals just seemed exhausting. Personal stuff was happening and I was worried I couldn’t add anymore to my plate.
I stared long and hard at the first item on my Bucket List that night. The item that covered my arms with goosebumps every time I thought about it. The item that was a lot of fun to write down, because, seriously, when was I ever going to do that?
And I did it. Not only did I do it, I was first off the plane. I left everyone else watching my body fall to the ground, and wondering if my chute would open.
It was absolutely fabulous. I thought I was going to have a heart attack. I thought I was going to die. But in that place of fear, I found comfort. Because that fear was at it’s highest at that moment. It couldn’t get any bigger, and once I landed, I would have conquered it.
It was more about feeling and knowing that fear. Once you’ve felt it. You can’t go back, because you know you are bigger than it is. You know that you can get past it. Getting past that allowed me to keep knocking things off the list. Half marathon? No problem! Randomly drawing the names of foreign countries from a bag and going to them? Are you kidding me? I can do it all day! Those are small potatoes!
What’s the one thing on your Lifetime To Do list that scares the Bejeezus out of you? Do it. Feel the fear and go for it. Get it over with. And take lots of pictures!
You won’t regret it, unless the chute doesn’t open. And then, well, you won’t really be in a position to regret much.