Risk taking. Hot damn it can be intimidating. You never know what will happen if you take that risk, but, more importantly, you will never know what you’re missing if you DON’T. Fear of change and fear of the unknown is enough to dissuade just about anyone from ever wanting to even consider taking a risk.
I agonized over my battle with fear for years. Then I turned 30.
You see, in my 20s I hardly took any risks. I kept the same soul-crushing job because the money was good. I stayed in the same city because I knew my way around. I stayed in the same loveless relationship because I had convinced myself that I hated the dating world.
I was in a rut. And I knew it.
Ditching The Rut
The day I turned 30 something started brewing in me. Perhaps turning 30, a big milestone in my eyes at the time, made me take a hard look at my life. Perhaps I finally grew tired of the same-old same-old. What I did know is that I needed to change my life.
I no longer wanted to settle for the comfy, yet boring, life I had created. I knew I wanted something bigger, something better, and to be with someone who made my heart skip a beat.
2 months later I found myself landing in Bangkok, Thailand, a whole world away from my old life. I lasted less than a week before I wanted to leave. To say that I was overwhelmed, scared, and fed up with the chaotic nature of Bangkok is an understatement. I cried every night because I missed my old, boring life.
I not only contemplated going home, I even made it as far as the airport before realizing that I needed to stay strong. I had made this change to challenge myself, to grow into the person that I wanted to be, and to experience a whole new world. So I turned around, caught another crazy taxi ride back to my hotel and started searching online for which Thai island I should visit first.
The next day, I was at the bus stop boarding my 6 hour bus ride to the ferry terminal, on my way to Koh Tao. 9 hours later I arrived on the island and almost immediately felt the tension melt from my body. I felt content.
I rented myself a tiny beach hut, went for walks on the beach, ate amazing food, drank some seriously strong Thai drinks, relentlessly indulged in uber-cheap Thai massages, and connected with other expatriate who were on the island to do the same thing as me.
Then, I met him.
He was Australian, younger than me, and one of the sweetest guys I had ever met. We quickly fell in love and our adventure together began. We traveled from Thailand to Malaysia, China to Australia, New Zealand to Canada, and somehow found ourselves walking on a remote beach in Costa Rica with a nasty storm quickly approaching us.
As we tried to find cover under a tree canopy and hide from the rain, my Aussie boyfriend started getting nervous and antsy. I wasn’t sure what was up, but the next minute I found him on one knee with tears in his eyes and the prettiest ring I had ever hoped to see in his hands.
I said yes, squealed a little, and we celebrated in the pouring rain.
When I tell this story it doesn’t even seem real to me, and yet I am constantly reminded of the beautiful truth each and every morning. This amazing reality I live in would not exist if I had never taken a risk. Because I took myself out of my comfort zone, challenged myself, and took some risks, my life became exactly what I had always hoped and dreamed it would be.
When we challenge ourselves and take ourselves out of our comfort zone, we open up to the power of possibility and opportunity. We place ourselves in a position to achieve everything we want for our future. It may feel scary at first, but that fear is merely because our soul is finally waking up and being satiated, while before it lay dormant and unfulfilled.
So ditch your rut and go after what you truly want. Take some risks! After all, from big risks come big rewards, and true life, true growth, always begins outside of your comfort zone.