Last year I gave away my e-book as my Christmas gift. This year I offer something else.
Here is a video I recently watched. Once it loads, skip to the 12:25 mark and watch.
As is said in the video, “What’s the point? The point is what science does for us. We normally walk through life responding. But if we ever want to do anything different, we have to step into uncertainty. When he opened his eyes, he was able to see the world in a new way.”
There is so much unhappiness out there, so much uncertainty, so much fear. It’s paralyzing.
As you saw in the video above, the man thought the sound was coming from the wrong direction because the helmet piped in sound from the opposite direction. In a world full of infinite uncertainty, do you think you might be wearing a similar helmet? A helmet that distorts reality in one way or another?
As I travel I meet tons of people. Many tell me they’d love to travel the world like me but they always have one excuse or another – often a financial excuse. But I know if I handed them $20,000 to use on a round-the-world trip they’d quickly find another excuse for why they are locked into their paradigm.
Traveling is my paradigm, but it’s fear that prevents most people from taking the plunge into their dreams. There are always obstacles in the way of achieving one’s dreams. ALWAYS. If there weren’t, success stories would have no value.
There is comfort in misery. Lots of comfort. It’s easy to live among one’s fellow miserable brethren, prevented from living the dream by one small issue or another. It’s as if there is contentment with misery, for actually going after your dreams requires a lot of work and may not have the desired payoff.
It is the few who have the audacity to build an intricate Rube Goldberg Machine to catapult themselves over that wall of fear. And once they’re on the other side, it’s hard to imagine how that wall so strongly controlled them before. It’s a new paradigm, where everything you thought you knew gets turned upside down (like when you found out Santa didn’t exist!).
How to conquer that fear, that uncertainty?
Think about babies. How do they handle uncertainty? For them, everything is new and uncertain and as the entire video above explains, they learn through playing. They use their five senses and explore every element of uncertainty. They burn their fingers on the stove (which happened to yours truly), stick all kinds of disgusting things in their mouths, etc. From these experiences they learn and grow and rarely approach something new with fear.
Why should it be any different as an adult? As I mentioned in my 500th post, experiment and experience are such similar words and experimenting with life can lead you to new experiences – I call this living and being alive.
We grow by confronting uncertainty and stepping outside our comfort zone. It forges new neural connections in our minds, creating new ways to solve problems, and increases confidence.
I have published the inaugural post in a series of articles about changing your paradigm to take more concrete steps to do this. But I hope this is fruitful food for thought for the time being. And, as we gear up for 2013, I hope it sets all dreamers off on a path toward asking “why not” instead of saying “cannot.”