Monday, December 11, 2006

Taking A Leap Of Faith

This was the Daily Om a couple of weeks ago:
Let Go And Let Flow
Taking A Leap Of Faith

Many people, in heeding the guidance of their souls, find themselves contemplating goals that seem outrageous or unattainable. In the mind's eye, these individuals stand at the edge of a precipice and look out over the abyss at the fruit of their ambition. Some resist the urge to jump, paralyzed by the gap between their current circumstances and the life of their dreams. Others make a leap of faith into the unknown, unsure of what they will encounter but certain that they will gain more in their attempts than they would bowing to self-protective instincts. This leap can be exceedingly difficult for individuals with control issues because the act of embracing uncertainty requires them to trust that surrender will net them the rewards they seek. Yet when you make a leap of faith, believing without a doubt that you will land safely on the other side, you can accomplish almost anything you set out to do.

There have no doubt been times in your life when you chose to go where the universal flow took you. Yet you may encounter instances in which your objectives require you to step outside of the boundaries of your established comfort zone so that you may freely and actively jettison yourself into a new phase of your life. While you may fear what seems to be the inevitable fall, consider that in all likelihood you will find yourself flying. A successful leap of faith requires your attention, as it is the quiet and often indistinct voice of your inner self that will point you toward your ultimate destination. Understand that the leap across the chasm of ambiguity may challenge you in unforeseen ways but you will make it across if you trust yourself.

If your mind and heart resist, you can dampen this resistance by building a bridge of knowledge. The more you know about the leap you are poised to take, the smaller the gap between "here" and "there" will appear to be. Your courageous leap of faith can lead you into uncharted territory, enabling you to build a new, more adventurous life. Though you may anticipate that fear will be your guide on your journey across the abyss, you will likely discover that exhilaration is your constant companion.
A certain amount of Fool energy is useful when we are presented with a challenge or opportunity that scares us. When we need to take that leap of faith and face the unknown, we need to be able to stay fully present with ourselves and not let past experience or future expectations cloud our decision. The Fool lives in the moment and does not consider consequences.

Obviously, we have to consider consequences. But once we have done so and we have made a choice, taking that leap into the unknown can still be scary. This is especially true for people like me who generally need to feel in control.

Yet even I can take that leap. When I decided to leave a stable and secure job to become a personal trainer, it was a huge leap of faith. The income would not be steady, the job would test my social anxiety in the extreme, and I did not know if I could really do the job.

It has been a challenge, but after 2.5 years I am the top trainer at my gym and among the top 15 in the state for Bally Total Fitness. I have long-term, loyal clients. And I did not die when my SA was tested -- and it was tested hard in the first weeks I was there.

When I quit my old job I was like the Fool about to step off the cliff. I had no idea what would happen -- but I trusted that it would work out. I chose to "just do it" and felt in my gut that it would be okay no matter what happened.

I still don't enjoy drastic change or risk taking, but I am learning little by little to trust that I will survive and find a way to have the life I want. I am learning to surrender into my life.

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