When a friend said these words to me, I started laughing…then continued to laugh. His initial comment taken verbatim was funny; however, as he elaborated on his metaphor for me not challenging myself, I have not been able to stop thinking about it. Timing is everything and I close the door on 2012 and look through the window to 2013, I can’t help but wonder what I am going to do to get out of the pool.
His comments got me thinking about adventure and feeling alive. This particular friend has taught me that it’s OK to take a risk. He has taught me to not be afraid to try. It’s OK to make a mistake; that striving to make it work or to walk away if it doesn’t is still considered a success. In either situation at least you lived and experienced it. If it doesn’t work out and you have to try another route or option, again, at least you tried. He’s taught me that living on the edge every once in a while is really the key to feeling alive and vibrant.
He caught me commenting on feeling safe, secure and comfortable, which I now realize is another way of saying I’ve lost my passion. His comment along the line of “…if the only reason you are staying in the pool is because it’s warm, then you need to quit peeing in the pool and get out…” his words hit me like the metaphorical safety net they are. In my comfort zone, I had become complacent and content. Content in my world doesn’t make me feel alive.
So as 2012 comes to a close and 2013 begins to reveal itself to each of us, I am wondering in what ways are you going to stretch yourself out of your comfort zone and quit peeing in the pool? Perhaps this is the year you start to exercise. Perhaps you start running or increase your mileage from 5 to 10. Maybe it means you try biking, swimming or yoga. Maybe it’s signing up for a painting class or register for a college class. Maybe you’ve been thinking about starting a blog or writing a book. Perhaps it means changing careers or starting a business or expanding your business. It might be contacting that long-lost friend or new neighbor that you’ve been meaning to catch up with or say hi to. The options are only limited by the restrictions we give them.
For me, I’m committing myself to my college classes, my blog (which will ultimately lead to a book) and to stretching myself by developing and presenting a motivational talk about breaking through mental barriers. I’m presenting it in February 19th, in Brainerd to my administrative professionals group if you are interested in hearing it. Also, if you belong to an organization that needs presenters, I’m looking for practice. Send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org and I would love to talk to you about presenting to your organization.