On October 7, 2017, I celebrated my 50th Birthday. By all accounts turning 50 is a big deal. And to the extent it is a big deal, many choose to do something big. Unlike most, my something big was to jump out of an airplane. Yup. I wanted to go skydiving. And thanks to the generosity of my youngest son, skydiving is exactly what I did.
Now, had someone asked me five years ago or even three years ago what I wanted to do for my 50th Birthday, jumping out of an airplane would have been the furthest thing from my mind. It would not have even been on a list of the top twenty things I wanted to do. So how did I end up jumping 10,000 feet out of an airplane, you ask?
All year, as I approached 50, I had been taking inventory of my life. I'm a thinker. I self evaluate all the time. However, the 50 thing intensified my thinking and my evaluation of my life. And while I could clearly look over my life and see a lot to be thankful for and proud of, what I could also see was a need to take my greatness to another level. This is the mantra of my life. Yet, the call to take my greatness to another level was also the call to tap deeper into my courage. Answering the call to tap deeper into my courage is how I ended up 10,000 feet in the air looking over the Earth from a vantage point I had never experienced before.
This, my friend, is the benefit of tapping deeper into our courage; we get to experience life from a different vantage point while meeting a braver, bolder version of our self. Do you have to jump from an airplane to do that? No. But you do need to have the courage to jump in one way or another. Whether jumping out of a lie you've been living for years into the truth. Or jumping out of a convenient relationship into a purposeful relationship. Or jumping into entrepreneurship. Or jumping onto a stage to finally use your singing gift. Or jumping through the bondage of anxiety that sabotages every good thought before you can even develop a plan of action, the reality is we have to understand that playing it safe is not always safe.
Keeping your feet planted in the routine of the familiar may feel like a good thing, but I contend that there is nothing good about watching life pass you by when in fact every fiber of your being knows there's more. There is nothing good about ignoring curiosity as it taps you on the shoulder and tries to turn your attention to something that is guaranteed to lift you higher or guaranteed to add exponential value to your life.
My jump was the beginning of me giving new meaning to going higher. I'm a literal person. In most instances I need to literally experience a thing to appreciate the impact of it in my life. My jump was the beginning of me saying YES to a more courageous life. In the scheme of growing our greatness, courage is everything. There is no being great without first being courageous. And so I encourage you to have an honest conversation with yourself. Listen to what your life is asking of you. Embrace the fear that comes up. Take some breaths. Then ask God to increase your courage...because it is time to jump!