Last week, I shared a personal story about our family’s experience with taking risk or exercising ‘Dogged Faith’ like one of the readers called it. As part of the journey, I mentioned that we went through some major lifestyle changes, but did not give details. I feel like telling tales today. I heard that Mum got so creative in the days of food shortage that she will cook beans and put a lot of pepper (chili) in it so that we will eat a little and drink alot of water. That way the pot of beans lasted longer and we had fuller bellies with just a little. The moral behind this tale is simple, we get creative when we are squeezed in our new zone. Something about a little pressure or fire that shapes and reshapes us into masterpieces in the potter’s hand.
I recall reading tales of classical voyages from back in the days, long before most of us lived, where people moved and typically did not know where they were going. Civilizations converged because someone sailed to the ‘Unknown’ with only a boat full of supplies, ammunition and a simple compass. Today, thanks to Google, we can visualise where we are going and get maybe too much information about our destination with only a few clicks. Yet most of us still seem so terrified by the ‘Unknown’.
We dream of a place called better, we know that ‘here’ is not the place but we fear that ‘there’ is too risky so we stay here. At 80, we realise we could have been more, done more and achieved more. I think of here as the ‘Me’ zone, all about me and not wanting to rock the boat. If you break free into discomfort, is it possible that impact to self and others is likely to increase? There is only one way to find out. After all, you can only know what lies ahead by going ahead. Just like the closed door from last week’s story.
Everyone has to face this monster at some point so brace yourself, ‘You are not alone’. Begin your journey with a few quick questions to gain clarity on what is required of you. A mental gap analysis will help you understand what is ‘here’, ‘there’ and what lies in between. For most of us, the ‘Unknown’ is usually directly or indirectly connected to the $€£¥. If you ever want to move, I will tell you for free that no amount of money acquired will ever feel like enough savings until you set your own contentment point. Once you agree on what contentment looks and feels like to you, you can begin your journey.
Perhap, we can learn a little lesson from the adventures of old. They set to sail with supplies (food, medication & water -Money), ammunition (Protection also known as insurance in today’s terms), a ship (Shelter and means of transportation), the right mentality (We can do this no matter what), the right combination of skills (only the skilled can survive the different seasons of life) and a compass (a map and all the relevant information on how to get there and what to do there).
As you begin your own adventure into the ‘Unknown’, be intentional about putting the resources required in place. Put money aside and seek out options to protect and grow your savings to accelerate the process of getting you to your contentment point. The faster you get to this point, the easier it will be to take the plunge. Surrounding yourself with the right people and equipping yourself with the right information about the next phase of your life will empower you to take steps towards getting ‘there’. You will need to actively close your ears to naysayers, most times they mean well but their vision is still limited by the comfort mentality. Have an active Plan B in case your calculations and permutations do not turn out as planned or take longer to materialise. Plan B could be a skill that you can rely on, other streams of income or even a return to status quo.
Don’t burn bridges, sometimes you may need to go back to go forward. I think of the game ‘Angry Birds’, where players use a slingshot to launch the bird towards a target. I noticed that the farther back you move the slingshot and the bird, the more force you accumulate to propel the bird towards its target.
There are so many quotes for and against venturing into the ‘Unknown’ or making bold moves. My favorite one is neutral and it says,
My final words to you, if the human mind can conceive a thing, the human hands can achieve it. I have always believed that with God, all things are possible, and if the good book says so, I am a total believer. So take action, make the Unknown known, understand your move and if it creates value for you, generations after you and planet earth, crush that monster and make that move.
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As you keep your 👀 on who you are becoming, we wish you all the best that life has to offer you.