I've stayed in hostels and started conversations with total strangers.
I've quit jobs that didn't make me happy, skydived and taken spontaneous trips out of my country.
Multiple times a year.
I've traveled alone and found others to travel with along my journey.
I chose to leave the traditional University education because my heart wasn't in it and I prefer a more rugged, hands-on education from the university of life right now.
My 20's are being dedicated to exploration, adventure, self-discovery and making a positive difference in this world.
I climbed a 2,434 foot mountain in British Columbia a few months ago on my own, making it down just as the sun set.
I've loved with my whole heart, even though there were no guarantees. Ever.
The truth is that I choose to live a life of mindful risk because it makes me feel alive. The risks I take are intentional because I believe that if we don't take the risks associated with becoming our strongest selves, we don't grow.
Because personal growth is such a strong value I hold, I know that in order to grow, we must move past fear, follow our intuition and act in favor of the impulses that urge us to get out of our comfort zone. Being uncomfortable is a risk, but what is more dangerous I believe is protecting ourselves from ever feeling our emotions and experiencing all of the experiences life urges us to take part in.
I'd rather feel and experience than not experience at all. I'd rather grow and push the limits of what I think is possible to discover more. I'd rather do what absolutely scares me, because I know that it will also make me feel absolutely alive.
Now before I continue, I want to make a clear distinction. When I say "mindful risk", I am referring to the risks that cause us to grow into our strongest, best selves. This doesn't mean recklessly doing drugs, disrespecting our bodies, sleeping around or doing things without thinking at all. I am talking about the positive risks we are afraid of taking because we want to avoid discomfort. These risks are spoken through the voice of our intuition that wants us to grow, thrive, live and love with our whole hearts.
A life without risk is a dangerous life because we are left wondering, "what if?"
What if I took that opportunity?
What if I went on that trip?
What if I let myself love him/her?
Without risk, we simply don't grow.
While we know that we risk pain by risking joy, the truth is that its worth it. It's the point of life.
I'd rather have both than neither. It's like the concept of yin and yang. "Yin Yang is the concept of duality forming a whole." So in essence, the risk to love and feel the ups comes with the downs. "Over thousands of years quite a bit has been sorted and grouped under various Yin Yang classification systems."
I recently experienced a life-changing relationship that caused me to grow immensely, but didn't work out in the long term. And you know what? It fucking sucks to feel the pain, but I wouldn't take any of the moments back because I leaned into them fully. They were amazing. And they made me realize that these experiences is what life is about. Breakups suck, but I still wouldn't take anything back. In fact, I am grateful for all of it.
So why do I choose to live on the edge? Because it makes me grow and feel alive. I've become a more loving, compassionate and understanding human being because of the risks I've taken. All of them. I can empathize more with others and their journeys because of mine. This is no "safe" path, but it is full and beautiful and its where we become more loving and find people who we can share our love with.
Now your turn. What is your "edge"? What makes you grow? What risks do you take?
Have some fun with this. Risk looks different for everyone so avoid comparison and focus on what it means for you.