The Fear Chronicles 4
- November 2014
There’s one question we all have, and it gets talked about in different ways: why. Why do things that scare you? Why do things that are risky? Everyone seems to have a different perception of what’s scary, what’s risky, what is worth it, whatever “it” is.
I read something I liked in a book today, Chips of Red Paint, which I got free for Kindle from Amazon (I read a lot of random books because they’re free for Kindle). “That’s how you accomplish things in life. You don’t sit around talking about it; you just do it. If you really want to go far in life, you do things that are hard and that you think you can’t do.”
Is there something to be gained from pushing yourself, from doing things that scare you? Would it be better to always take the safe path? It’s easy to say, “go for it, just do it,” etc. etc, but how do we deal with the fact that sometimes things don’t turn out as we want them to? The nature of risk is that the outcome is not guaranteed. We love it when we take risks and we succeed. We hate it when we take risks and we lose. And so it’s back to why, and it becomes more than just why, and also how. I’m curious to hear from others, but I’ll say what I think. I think that every creature must take risks in life, and we’ll be taking risks whether we “choose” to or not, simply by virtue of the fact that we are finite and the world is endlessly full of unknowns and external factors. Things don’t stop happening, ever, and we are very small. Though we have run with the power to manipulate the environment and to rule life or death over all other creatures, still, we don’t control everything and though we fight it kicking and screaming, we are mortal.
For myself, I think that taking risk in a reckless fashion is disrespectful of the miracle of life. I feel it’s my duty to keep my eyes and my mind open, to work hard to understand the meaning of risk and to treat it with the utmost respect. I believe that everyone’s choices in this regard are legitimate. I hope the choices are made with reflection and intention, and that the choices are framed as “I will” rather than “you should”.
My friend Andy Lewis wrote something on facebook I found very poignant yesterday:
“Life is riddled with twists and turns, happiness and sadness, loyalty and betrayal, success and failure, dreams and reality, and sometimes the most challenging of all times is the in-betweens of these extremes. However, the hardest of times for most people seem to exist somewhere between these extremes. The inevitable question that both inspires and haunts me on a daily basis is “what’s next?” Does it have to be more intense? More complicated? More dangerous? And the faint whisper of my own consciousness asking myself if I will ever be satisfied… with anything, is starting to raise it’s voice. Will anything ever be enough for me?? It’s becoming more and more apparent that life is really lived in the moment, the here, the now. The past can’t be changed, but the way you let it affect you can. The future isn’t promised, but it is somewhat predictable, which I can’t deny. As for whats next? I don’t really know, i’m just going to keep dreaming. Am I satisfied? Not even close, but its moments like these that warrant emotional redefining because happiness and success have bumped up to a new scale. Live in the moment, control your life, and do it now.”
What do you think?