The Journey Into The Unknown
Have you ever had to make a decision that you felt was so right, but everything about it was unfamiliar to you? Did you ever come up with these random excuses that convinced you to not follow through with making that decision? After some time, were these excuses really as convincing as they initially seemed? No matter what excuses your mind conjures up, your gut will always work through it and tell you which decision is the one for you, all you have to do is stop talking and listen. I mean, asking people for advice may help the process, but ultimately every choice is our own and we have to live with that. No one around you has experienced your life, so how can you expect them to know exactly how you may feel? That, my friend, is a privilege that the universe has bestowed upon you, and only you! Any advice that you get that pushes you towards or pulls you away from your goal is all meaningless unless you listen to that voice inside, telling you what your soul is yearning for. No one explores something new in life without a little fear. Persevering and being brave in the face of fear is what makes us all a little extraordinary. We are all faced with decisions that may take us out of our comfort zones and throw us into an unknown abyss, but why do so few of us ever follow through? Here are my thoughts on this, so enjoy kind reader!
Making a decision that forces you to journey into the unknown may seem like something that only super-heroes do, but it’s not as bad as you think. Whether you are deciding to leave home or join a gym or start some new hobby, the journey is one for you to embark on. We all feel the fear and conjure up these thoughts that are so compelling in that moment, but lose their essence after some time. We all want to achieve great things, but never willing to do great things. Sticking to what you do know has got you this far in your life. Wherever you are in your life, you truly know what is best for you. Stagnating or improving is a choice that you alone must make. Taking responsibility for your actions or inaction's is something that you alone must face, yet most of us force others to face the consequences of our actions. Yes, it’s weird, I know. We train ourselves to think in a specific way and as a result play victim to regret and guilt, never realizing that our issues are within. We fight so hard, never realizing that we are the only ones in the ring, fighting ourselves and spilling our souls onto the audience. We drain our souls of all of its splendor and start to lose our passion for life… This is when I believe that we die, not when we are buried, but when we lose our passion for life…
Ultimately we know deeply that the other side of every fear is a freedom - Marilyn Ferguson
When it was my turn to embark on my own adventure, I felt every bit of fear that I had known possible. It really was not an easy decision for me to make and definitely was not one that I enjoyed making (at the time). I was just about done with university and it was time for me to journey out into (what I thought was) the ‘real world’. There was something inside of me that refused to allow me to believe that I was worth just being another statistic on this planet. Every day, I had been telling the universe that I was worth so much more than just being some person. I wanted to be something more and to become everything that I wished, I had to listen to my gut… After some time, I was given an opportunity that offered me to leave everything familiar in my life and journey out into the unknown. No more friends, no more family, just me alone with myself. It was a tough decision for me to make. I would come up with silly excuses that initially were convincing me to stay in my comfort zone, to stay where everything was known. But I could not ignore that voice inside of me that told me that I should make this decision. What if I leave and everyone that relies on me, can’t rely on me anymore? Well, think about how much more useful we could be to them if we embarked on this journey. What if I fail? What if we succeed? Well, what if things are different when I come back home? Do you expect yourself to be the same when you come back? These were the conversations that I would have with myself, which helped me realize that I was the one making this decision. I cannot expect some other to decide my life for me. I didn’t care what happened, if this is what it took to change the world then this is what I will do. I wanted to be great and being great cannot be earned without making sacrifices… This reminds me of a little conversation from the movie The Hobbit:
Gandalf: You’ll have a tale or two to tell when you come back.
Bilbo Baggins: You can promise that I will come back?
Gandalf: No. And if you do, you will not be the same.
I honestly never expected what I was about to experience. I was ready to face anything that came my way, but I could never predict what was about to come my way... Thinking about it now, I ended up meeting some amazing people and grew in ways that I never guessed was possible. I learned how to take care of myself and I learned how to talk to anyone (from learning Swahili with car guards to networking with CEO’s). Speaking to people really does have a weird way of making your day a little different. Trust me, it wasn’t all good. There were tragic moments that tested me in terrible ways, but I felt myself growing with each experience and that was more fulfilling than anything else that I had ever faced. I journeyed out into the unknown and met some amazing people who became a part of my family. I learned how to face the real world and things that mattered. I was becoming the person that I imagined myself to be. All I did was listen to my gut and approach each situation in a manner that allowed me to respect myself at the end of the day. This was all I truly wanted in my life, to respect myself at the end of each day. Before I left home, I never thought that I would be sitting here back at home a year later, with the knowledge, courage, and skills that I do have and be working on changing the world (literally never!). I started to see life in a different manner and appreciate it in a weird way. Being away from everyone that meant something to me made me appreciate them on a whole new level. I made this sacrifice work for me and I made sure that I woke up every day with a mission to be great…To grow myself and be better than I was yesterday…
Things are not the way you make it out to be. Journeying out into the unknown is exactly what it is, unknown. We think that by playing small and seeing the familiar every day that our lives will remain the same, but we cannot escape that which is not known. Whether you never choose to leave home or never choose to make the decision that your soul is craving you to make, you face the unknown every day of your life. You may choose to sit on a couch for the rest of your life, but can you predict if a fly may sit on your nose? Can you know whether the roof may collapse on you? No, we face the unknown every day in our lives and choosing to avoid it is impossible. The future is uncertain because it is yet to be created. We are the artists living in our present experiencing the future and creating the memories of our past…
Whatever you do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius and power and magic in it.– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
My point is that we may all come to a point where we must make a decision to journey into the unknown. Most of us try too much to get other people to make the decision for us, but this is one for us to make. Your experience may never be the same as mine and that’s fine, you must have your own story to tell. The lessons that you learn are so great that it has a way of growing you out of the person that you was and you start to find more of the person that you will become. Don’t get me wrong, each person has their own experience of this journey, some may enjoy their freedom and some may not. All I can say is that I learned more about myself by taking time to focus and better myself. I just never expected the type of person that I would have become nor the skills that I would learn. Now I have learned to focus on writing as a craft to reach people and inspire them, based on what I learned, so that they can take my lessons and apply it to their lives and hopefully use them to improve their lives and of those around them. This truly is a privilege.
Bruce Lee perfectly summed it up as, “Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.” Face life and all that shall come… Jump into uncertainty and you may just discover a new piece of your soul. The length of your life may never be known, but the depth of it is in your control. Every day and every moment is written down in eternity. Do something that would usually scare you into inaction. It could be taking pictures or inspiring random people! The other side of fear isn’t so bad. You could just find what your soul has always been seeking. Invest in your existence and you may soon discover more of the splendor that is you!
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