In describing me as a young girl, no one would have used the term “risk taker”. Even into adulthood no one would have used the term “bold and brave” in describing the way in which I’d chosen to live my life. I imagine the words that would have been used to describe my life choices would have been “cautious and careful”. Nothing really wrong with that, no one severely impacted by my choices except that it led me to say “No” to so many things. “No, I don’t do things like that!”, “No, I’d rather not try that”, or the killer statement “No, I’m just not athletic!”
I now realize that fear was at the core of why saying “No” was so easy~ Fear of failure, fear of harm, fear of criticism, and fear of committing to something new….FEAR! I am left to wonder how many great moments I missed over the years because saying “Yes” felt paralyzing to me!
I was about 8 years ago when I decided that I was going to start saying “Yes’. Yes to health, yes to daring and challenging activities, and yes to situations that caused me to stretch past my discomfort. Saying “Yes” still didn’t come easy but I was committed to not missing out on life any longer!
My husband and I have been privileged to go to the Hawaiian Islands many times. Sure, I would take simple hikes and spend time swimming and enjoying the sun, however, I wanted nothing to do with those risky excursions that were available. In this new season my husband was shocked when I said “Yes” to crazy long hikes, zip line adventures, doorless helicopter flight over the island, and biking down the volcano!! I was shocked too!!
I loved it all!! Who would have thought?
I am so thankful I started to say “yes” instead of “no” back then. Since that time I have hiked, biked, run 5K’s, ziplined many times, and have made incredibly rich memories with my family and friends. Those things that had caused me intense fear, when engaged in, were actually so much fun!! I grieve for the time I wasted and I’m grateful for the way I live life now!!
How do you live your life? Do you play it safe? Excuse yourself from a long list of outdoor activities? Refuse to fly, float, or drive? Have you missed out on situations that may have brought your great joy and freedom? How about beginning to say “Yes” instead of “No”? How about being really brave this summer and trying something new, something for you that is “out of the box”? You JUST might find that you really, really like it! 🙂