"You can’t be that kid standing at the top of the waterslide, overthinking it. You have to go down the chute." — Tina Fey
People often tell me that I am "fearless" and just seem to "go for it." But I happen to know that I am actually SOOOO much the kid standing up there, overthinking...and scared to death!!
Yet, I also know that the times in my life when I have just leapt, without looking or thinking, have turned out the best.
There was the time that we took the timeshare tour at Casa del Mar in Aruba, and spontaneously signed up to buy, pre-construction no less. We were so shaken by our act that we went straight to the bar and spent the afternoon soothing ourselves with rum and coconut libations. This spontaneous buying decision resulted in 20 years of wonderful vacations on Aruba, and in many of our happiest times and fondest memories.
There was the time we bought the old Victorian house in Maine and opened up an art gallery for my husband in the carriage house. He was, then, a total unknown, and we had no clue whatsoever about running a gallery. Despite our staggering ignorance, we sold his paintings and my crafts and photographs. He developed a strong following for his art and we met tons of nice people.
Then, when we moved to Arizona, I wanted to do work that made me feel like I making a difference in the world. On a whim, I sent a note to a local pastor, letting him know I was available for .... anything. By chance, he was starting up a non-profit program that helped homebound seniors and their caregivers. Did I want to help, he asked? Sure! I answered. I jumped in, and the next thing we knew, The Foothills Caring Corps was helping hundreds of people. This snap decision had another unexpected benefit - it also opened up my writing career. Over the next five years, I wrote more than 40 feature articles about aging and caregiving for national magazines.
When we moved to Santa Fe, I suddenly decided to take yoga teacher training. (I know, I'm starting to sound like someone who changes her mind a lot. Well, hey, it's a girl's perogative, right?) I googled "yoga teacher training, Santa Fe," and up came the name Tias Little. I didn't know until I showed up for the first day of training that Tias is something of a Big Deal in the global yoga community. So, I ended up taking yoga teacher training, here in my own town, with one of the top yoga teachers in the world.
Which brings us to the book. Earlier this year, I was pursuing the traditional path to publishing with my agent. We were only a couple of months into it, but already I was starting to think about self-publishing. In June, a few coinciding (but not coincidental) events occured, and overnight I decided to take the leap and publish on my own. Within a few weeks, the book creation process was underway and I was forging ahead with my marketing plan.
Then I took some deep breaths and reminded myself that, when I leap, I always do much better than when I think too much. Because of the other successful leaps I've taken, I've gained some faith that there will be a net to catch me. But that doesn't mean I'm not still scared...
Anyway, I've already leapt and I'm in mid-air now, so I couldn't turn back, even if I wanted to! And I'm not at all saying that I'm sorry I made this decision. I'm thrilled that the book will come into the world soon. I'm proud of it and proud of myself for leaping. But I'm still scared! Thank heavens I have my bloggy friends to keep me steady.
So, I'm curious, are you a leaper or a thinker? Or, like me, a little of both?