Just over a year and a half ago, I made what was perhaps the most difficult decision of my life to date. To walk away from something that had grown to be so bad for me; physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally.
However, with both feet now out the door I can hand on my heart say I’ve not looked back.
My initial fears of people’s judgements and opinions of my choices have all proven to be unfounded. Through it all the greatest lesson I’ve learnt is, all too often we spend much of our time worrying about how we are perceived by others.
I’ve made a conscious decision to stop caring and allowing ‘the fear’ to dictate my actions or choices. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a healthy level of fear that we all need to rationalise our actions. And with regards to not caring, this is not to be interpreted as recklessness or self consuming arrogance either. I’ll always be open to constructive advice and guidance, but what I’ve chosen to remember is, somebody else’s reality isn’t necessarily mine. There’s black and white and so many different shades of grey.
I recently came across this quote, by Diane Ackerman, which captures it all perfectly:
“… There are moments on the brink, when you can give yourself to a lover, or not; give in to self-doubt, uncertainty, and admonishment, or not; dive into a different culture, or not; set sail for the unknown, or not; walk out onto a stage, or not…. Resist then, and…there is only what might have been.” Ackerman calls these moments “littoral,” like the borders where dry land meets the ocean. A defining characteristic of charismatic people is that they choose to walk through littoral moments as if they had no doubt.
Now, let me take this moment to clarify what I mean: Narcissists can appear charismatic for a while, because they never doubt they’re right. This conviction commands attention and respect, at least until they turn out to be hopelessly wrong. True charismatics, by contrast, acknowledge and learn from their mistakes. They release doubt simply because doubt isn’t useful when they’re on the brink…
To follow this example, find a littoral zone in your life and step beyond it as if you had no doubt.
… My sister yesterday said to me that I’m somewhat philosophical if not an idealist, what can I say, in the words of Diddy, “I can’t help that I’m an optimist”. I’ve promised myself to live my life like it’s golden. My biggest fear is perhaps to reach grand old age and think retrospectively, “what if, if only, shoulda, woulda, coulda…“
I’ve reached a significant juncture, my waters feel warm (does that read okay? .. ‘Cos, no, I’m not about to go into labour )… I can’t wait to share the amazing adventures that are soon to follow with you all…