A friend sent me this video of her niece during swimming lessons and I almost fell off my chair laughing. Her courage was both hysterical and a good reminder of what it is to be as daring as a 2-year-old. Notice how in the video little Sam throws the ball into the pool and it floats. Then she figures she could float just as well, and without a minute's notice to her unsuspecting father, she takes one incredible leap and plunges into the water. Without a thought, without fear, with absolute confidence that her father would be there if anything went wrong, she dives into the pool.
As children, we all came into this world endowed with incredible courage and confidence. We believed in everything and thought we could do everything, including flying! But as we matured and life began to take us down different lanes, reality began to hit. We were cautioned against making mistakes, which gradually invited fear into our hearts. With every stroke of failure we unlearnt our childhood bravery and took on adulthood suspicion.
From time to time it's refreshing to see childhood innocence masked by courage. It's important to remind ourselves to throw caution to the wind and strike out. Easy for a toddler—incredibly difficult for a grown adult who has seen the harsh realities of life. So how to you revive the little dare devil in you? How you do you get past that nagging voice of reality in your head? Have you figured out how to keep your zest for learning and taking risks as you go through life? It's so easy to get sucked up in the pond of 'no' and 'can't be done', especially if you've a had a negative experience. But if you really want to continue to have some relevance, you've got to unlearn your mistakes and take a leap. I believe in taking risks. You can't be absolutely sure it wouldn't work until you try, but I also believe in taking calculating risk. Before you leap into a pool like Sam, make sure you can swim or at least have a life jacket. There are so many incredible experiences to enjoy as we go through life—don't be in a hurry to grow old and lose your childhood innocence and bravery. Take a leap… try new things.
So let's see if we can teach some old dogs new tricks. To keep a balanced level of daring courage and real life caution, you need to break the mold. Try out new ways to do old things: Order in Thai food instead of African meals for a change. Visit a friend by ferry instead of taking the bus like you have done for years. Add some colors to your wardrobe instead of wearing black like me! Every little action you take towards trying out a new thing releases new energy into your body and increases your zest for life. For most adults it's a little unnerving and stressful at times when we break out of our routine, but you need to try in order to keep your mind active and alert. Nothing says dull & boring like endless routine. If you want your life to say 'exciting!', 'creative', 'can’t wait to see another day!', you need to find new ways to do old things or try new things. Life is full of surprises if you are open to them… Throw caution into the wind, let little Sam out, and dare to believe again.
Two thumbs up for Samantha, our little daredevil for reminding us to take a leap!