When I think about the path that we, as a family, are about to embark, I am fearful. It is something we have never done before. There are more unknowns than knowns.
And stepping into the unknown is always fearful.
But this time, when I stared down at my fears, I managed to find the courage to not be intimidated by it.
The conventional path
I want myself, as well as my family, to constantly question whether following the conventional path that we were told to follow is the right one.
The conventional path for me was:
- Study hard
- Get a degree
- Secure a good job
- Made for life
The conventional path for my children were:
- Enrol in a preschool/kindergarten
- Sign them up for enrichment classes
- Enrol them into a good school
- Give them with additional coaching
- Sign up for more enrichment classes
- Urge them to study hard
- Get good grades
- Earn a degree
- Secure of good job
- Made for life
Many people I know will go along with the conventional path. Many people might even question if it is wise to take something other than the conventional path. Some might even call you crazy for questioning the conventional path.
I want us to question the conventional path is for us.
It takes courage to question
To question requires courage. To answer that question and then choose what we think is the right path requires even more courage.
Courage is not the lack of fear. It is acting in spite of it. ~Mark Twain
If fear is about not good enough or not having enough, then courage is about embracing the concept of not enough.
All three projects that I am currently working on, I’ve always felt either not good enough or not having enough at some point in time. Many times both. If I were succumb to the idea that I am not good enough or I do not have enough experience, I would have never started, let alone make progress of any kind.
While working on write, publish, sell my book, there were many times where I felt that I am not good enough to write the book. Or I will say to myself that I don’t have enough experience to write the book. Instead of succumbing to these fears, I embraced the concept of not enough.
Something magical when I embraced this concept.
I began taking steps, albeit small ones, towards completing the project. Sometimes these steps are wrong and I simply take it as feedback, evaluate it, and adapt along the way. I’ve even formulated a framework and have written about it here.
Are you being practical
Whenever you step out of the known into the unknown, fear is always there. But that doesn’t mean you have to live in fear.
Some choose to be practical. That’s just a code word for living in fear.
In his speech to the class of 2014, Jim Carrey put it this way:
Fear is going to be a player in your life, but you get to decide how much. You can spend your whole life imagining ghosts, worrying about your pathway to the future, but all there will ever be is what’s happening here, and the decisions we make in this moment, which are based in either love or fear.
So many of us choose our path out of fear disguised as practicality. What we really want seems impossibly out of reach and ridiculous to expect, so we never dare to ask the universe for it. I’m saying, I’m the proof that you can ask the universe for it — please! And if it doesn’t happen for you right away, it’s only because the universe is so busy fulfilling my order. It’s party size!
Ask and answer this question: Is the path, even if it is a conventional one, that you are following the right one?