I’ve been reflecting a lot since general conference last week. Reflecting on things I’ve done, things I do right and things I could do better. But ultimately, I ask myself who is it that I am and who is it that I want to be.
You see an opportunity recently came to me. One that required leaving my comfort zone. Nevertheless, it was an opportunity.
When I first told people about this opportunity, they looked at me with skeptical eyes. They questioned me. Some were simply indifferent or uncaring. But, because taking this opportunity had potential to lead to something great, not only would I leave my comfort zone and enter the “growth zone,” but I would be able to work toward finding who I am and becoming closer to who I want to be.
You’re probably wondering what this so-called opportunity was. Well, I could tell you, but where’s the fun in that? All that really matters is I took a chance, because that is who I want to be: someone who takes chances — no matter how risky or uncomfortable — and follows her heart.
We often avoid risky things out of fear or doubt. I know I have. Yet, if we do not take a chance on something, how will we ever know what could have come from it? We can’t. And I don’t know about you, but I surely don’t want to live in a never-ending state of “what ifs.”
I am taking a chance. Am I scared out of my mind? Oh, definitely. But giving myself a shot also tells me something intrinsic about the thing I am taking a chance on too: If I am willing to risk being disappointed or let down in hopes that something good will come of it, then that tells me how important that something is to me — what it’s worth in my eyes.
I don’t want to live a wary life because, frankly, that isn’t really even living. I want to be a proactive, involved individual. I don’t want life to keep moving without me, I want to be in the race alongside it. And you should too.
Taking risks not only can help you grow and become the person you want to be, but can benefit your life in numerous other ways as well as the lives of those around you.
In taking chances, we can share what we learn from our experiences with others and be influencers for good. By taking a chance, you could meet someone special, help someone, land that job. Though success isn’t guaranteed, at least you will find out what not to do and how to do better next time.
Do you think Amelia Earhart would have accomplished all that she did without taking chances? Or Nephi for that matter? Without leaping in faith, in hope?
I know I would surely be filled with regrets if all the chances available to me turned out to be missed opportunities in the end. Likewise, I know I’ll be content in following my heart. Even if the chance taken doesn’t turn out how I would like it to, I will still have gained something. It would still be a learning experience. A memory to pass on. Advice to share. Most importantly, it would still affect the person I am afterward. It may hurt for a while, but if I even took the chance in the first place, risk and all, that just tells me it was worth it.
Maybe I’m just a hopeless romantic or too sentimental, but things happen for a reason, sometimes many. But we will never know what those reasons are if we let fear stop us from finding out. So take a chance, embrace the risk despite the discomfort, push yourself so you can potentially grow into who you want to be. Live life, don’t just watch it go by. You won’t regret it. Take it from someone who did.