Learn to leap

by Shannon Ables
The Simply Luxurious Life 

“Never let the odds keep you from doing what you know in your heart you were meant to do.”

~ H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

If you’ve ever watched the 90’s sitcom Frasier, you may remember the episode that focuses on how one should go about making the most of that extra day we are afforded in February every four years – February 29th.

Of course, with the show’s purpose to leave us laughing, each character’s attempt to take a leap in their life, that they perhaps wouldn’t have normally, ends in absolutely disaster – an atrocious hair cut, a near airplane disaster, and a failed musical performance.

With outcomes like these, it is no wonder many of us are fearful to take risks and leap to try to grab hold of something we want but know has the potential to end in disaster. But what we fail to keep in mind is that the only reason these grand leaps of faith are frightening is because we don’t know how it will turn out.

We know we don’t have absolute control over the outcome, so therefore, we tremble a bit more significantly, we doubt a bit more quickly and we focus more on the negative possibilities than the positive ones.

As February begins,  and with it an extra day to either improve our lot in life or maintain the status quo, I would like to share with you today that you’re not the only one who is fearful of taking a leap, I am too. But it’s still work taking the jump. Let me explain.

You see there are many aspects of life that I am confident about due to the experiences and opportunities in my life as I’ve shared many times here on The Simply Luxurious Life. But there is one aspect (a very important aspect) that causes me to tremble just a bit . . . true love.

Being the independent person that I am, I have come to learn to take care of myself, trust my decision making and have confidence that I can make a great life for myself no matter where I am. In fact, upon turning thirty a few years ago, I felt the stigma of being single and supposed lacking lift as I realized that life can be as full as I want to make it whether I am living on my own or with somebody else. And with that, I stopped looking and started to fully just throw myself in to living.  Absolute exhilaration and a heightened healthy confidence followed.

And as corny as it sounds, when I stopped looking, love found me – true love that is. Not forced affection, not two needy people not wanting to be alone.  Quite the opposite really, as we were both very content and fulfilled in our single lives prior to meeting each other.

By sharing this with you today is its own form of a leap, at least for me, because I am very private, but I wanted to share with you that even I get scared. Even I look for answers that don’t immediately fall in my lap. However, even though I feel this way, I am choosing to step forward toward a future with someone who I don’t want to live without, and while I don’t have all the certainties of how it will play itself out, I do know who I am, I do know what my behavior, loyalty and devotion will be, and that’s all I can have control over. Which in a way, once you let go and leap, should be quite freeing.

As my boyfriend and I dream, plan and look at each other with complete awe and wonderment of what is yet to be for us as we plan our lives together, I know I am in mid-flight. I know I am leaping in many regards. And trust me, there are moments when I look down to see that I’m putting myself in a very vulnerable position that doesn’t have a net and it rattles me.  For so long I have always simply depended upon myself, and now I am trusting someone with my heart, the real me and a future that requires teamwork. It’s a big leap, but I wouldn’t want to miss out on what could be.

I ask of you today to look into your dreams. Look into your heart and ask yourself what is the leap that you would like to take, but for some reason you are holding back? I want you to know that it’s human nature to be afraid, but with a few simple things to keep in mind (see below), you too can step forward and take the leap that you need in order to attain what might be. Sometimes, one of the toughest parts of the entire process is to simply verbalize what you want, perhaps fearful of how others will react.  I want to assure you, if you would like to share today what your leap would be, you will only hear support.

Regardless of what your leap or daring risk is, before you take the first step, answer these few simple questions to better prepare your mind and thus have a more successful experience no matter what the outcome:

1. Determine what the risk, once successful, could bring or add to your life.

2. Ask yourself what the worse case scenario is if the leap doesn’t work out.

3. Determine the turn around point. What are your boundaries? What has to happen to make it unfathomable to continue forward, as it would be doing more harm than good? Then explain why this is your turn around point.

Once you have honest answers to each of these questions, and you have shown that the leap is in your best interest to take if indeed it works out, then do yourself and your life a tremendous favor and leap.  The key to any success is to know who you are, to always want to continue to grow and to realize that fear is natural, because after all, running from fear will never lead you where you want to go. So turn around, face what taunts you and leap.

At this moment, I am in mid-flight. Won’t you join me?


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