February 17, 2007.
"The winds and waves are always on the side of the ablest navigators."
Dont rock the boat. Dont make waves. These are just a couple of the thousands upon thousands of donts that we have been cautioned against our entire lives. If you are like most folks, youve been told dont do this and dont do that so many times and so often that you sometimes dont do much of anything at all. Doesnt it almost seem like those things you shouldnt do outnumber the things that OK to try a hundred to one?
But the beat doesnt stop there. Dont take risks. Dont take chances. Dont climb out on a limb. Thats right, another group of play it safe donts we have learned to live with. For years people all around have continually warned us against the inherent danger of taking unnecessary risks, the perils that await if we fail to play it close to the vest. After awhile, with the nonstop barrage of donts take a predictable toll.
"You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment."
Henry David Thoreau
Dont, dont, dont, dont, dont. What a regrettable way to go through life; scared to death to take a chance, frightened at the mere prospect of making a bad move. Is that really the way we were destined to live our lives, refusing to roll the dice and take a few chances every once in a while? Of course not. As a matter of fact, we were born to do just the opposite.
We were put here to thrive, not barely survive. Life dishes out an assortment of opportunity to each of us daily, some coming in easy to handle bite-size pieces, others in bigger than life portions that require more than most are willing to offer. If we are going to seize these big time opportunities when they occur, squeezing the most out of the moment at hand, we going to have to take some chances when the chances need to be taken.
"As long as you don't make waves, ripples, life seems easy. But that's condemning yourself to impotence and death before you are dead."
Instead of fretting over the potential consequences of rocking the boat, worrying about whether we may fall out or tip the boat over, we need to grab the oars and forcefully steer ourselves in the direction of our dreams. Boldly, powerfully, giving no thought or credence to the dont do it crowd. With each powerful stroke of the paddles, we push ourselves further and further away from all of the donts that have handcuffed us for oh so long; moving closer and closer to living the life we desire.
Lets face it, if we idly sit there in the boat, refusing to do anything at all, sooner or later the boat will sink right to the bottom of the lake. Thats right, doing nothing and taking no risks whatsoever will still result in the boat going down and taking you along with it if youre not careful. So why not make a few waves, get the boat moving and see what happens instead?
"Theres no secret to balance. You just have to feel the waves."
There is a common misconception thats been going around for what seems like forever that playing it safe leads to a more tranquil, more peaceful existence. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. If we refuse to take chances, refuse to take risks and refuse to climb out on the proverbial limb from time to time, we are destined to live a dull, dreary life of doing without. While we may think avoid the pain of making mistakes by taking few chances, we inadvertently commit the biggest blunder of all in the process we fail to live the life we could have, should have, wished we would have lived.
We need to stop worrying about rocking the boat and start rocking it with everything weve got. Instead of barely making a splash in the shallow end of the pond, why not venture out a bit farther and see what happens? Why not forget about all of the dont things weve been told we shouldnt do and start doing them instead?
Isnt it about time to test the waters, wave good-bye to play it safe lifestyle and start making some big time waves of our own? You can and you will the minute youre willing to throw all those donts overboard once and for all.
The Bottom Line: Why sit on the shore when you can jump in, splash around and makes some waves?
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