We’re often called to take risks in life. To put ourselves out there.
Problem is, it’s usually easier to run away from something than take a risk and go for it. And often we do run away.
But there’s always a cost to running away.
In the movie ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ Bruce Wayne is trapped in an underground prison. The only escape is to climb up a tall hole and get out. The only problem? To get out he must leap from one part of the wall to the other. If he fails the leap, he cannot get out, and falls.
At first he doesn’t get out. He has a rope to catch him if he falls, so the jump is relatively safe. He’s not risking anything.
He gets told, by a fellow prisoner, the only way to make the jump, the only way he can truly escape the prison,
is by jumping without a rope.
By risking his life.
So he makes the jump again. Without the rope. And what happens?
Bruce succeeds. To the cheers of his fellow prisoners, he makes the jump.
He escapes. He is free.
By facing his fear, he conquers it. He is set free to fulfil his destiny and save his city.
But first, he had to jump.
Take a risk.
Put it all on the line.
This scene (which you can see the video at the bottom) always inspires me, because recently, I’ve been challenged to jump myself. I decided to release my first e-book out into the world (if you signed up for it early, you’ll already have had your copy – and if you don’t, from Monday you can get it free here). I even assembled a team to help me promote it.
But all the time, I was terrified. Always going through my mind was the thought
“What if no one reads it?”
“What if no one takes any notice?”
“What if this flops completely?”
As a typical over thinker who occasionally lacks confidence, this was playing on my mind significantly. I had no idea how the book would be received – and at time of writing, still don’t completely know, as it’s not released properly till next week.
If this didn’t work, then I could consider myself have failed. I’m trying to grow as a writer, and want this book to get to as many people as possible. If no one, or very few people, want the book, this could be said to have failed. I could look at others getting more success and feel resentment, jealousy, envy and bitterness.
I could be tempted to give up blogging altogether. I could argue, what would be the point, if no one wants to read my work? I don’t write for everyone else, I write for the love of writing.
It would meet my inner child’s expectations of myself. All my insecurities made into a reality again.
You see, in many ways, there’s lots of reasons I wouldn’t jump. Why I might just keep my blog as it is, write as I am and never take a risk.
But I know I have to jump. If I am to grow, I have to risk it all. (you can tweet that here)
And then, I have to surrender the outcome.
If it doesn’t work out as I hope, I will not give up. I will keep blogging, and I will write another book and put it out there.
I will keep jumping.
And no matter what the outcome, I will always learn something from the experience. I will continue to grow.
Because we cannot live our lives without jumping.
If we don’t jump, we will never grow. We will be safe, but remain trapped as we are. Just like Bruce was trapped in the prison until he jumped (see the video below).
The question I leave you with today is:
Have you jumped?
And if you haven’t, are you going to jump?