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You are Safe

By Tami Evans

The Park Ranger pointed North, “Two miles down the path you will see the trail branch off up to The Waterfall. The final mile up you will notice a slight increase in difficulty.” (Slight increase was more than a slight understatement.)

After a grueling hour scrambling over rocks and roots we reach the top of the waterfall… and an enormous sign warning of DANGER and potential loss of life if you even CONSIDER swimming in the waterfall.

…And two boys SWIMMING in the waterfall!

“What was it like?” we ask as they come dripping up the path.

“COLD!” and they are off on their way.

Honestly, I don’t think I need a sign. I am almost certain that happening upon a 125 foot waterfall on a three mile hike into the mountains, I would not even contemplate splashing around at the top of it!

I, however, may be in the minority here. It is clear that those boys were not the first, nor will be the last, to take the Dip of Danger – There is a huge steel ladder permanently installed at the mouth of the waterfall just at the point where the pool starts it’s descent down the rocks.

Would you swim in it?

A similar question always pops into my head when I watch Project Runway. At the end of each episode the design contestants are lined up and the judges call a small handful forward and tell them their scores have kept them safe. They wait backstage. The remaining contestants have the highest and lowest scores… Someone will be the Winner and someone will be Out.

Backstage you are safe but mediocre. On-Stage you have the potential for being the winner – But equal potential of being eliminated.

Where would you rather be standing?

In a baseball game, knowing you could be The Hero and win the game – or just as easily get out and lose it all – would you attempt to Steal Home?

Taking Risks is Trickly business. Yes, I said Trickly. (tricky + prickly)

But Risks are the stuff that creates growth, and depth and breadth. Risk = Life.

If you are considering taking a risk, first ask yourself these questions:
1. Am I certain it will not cause great injury to myself or others?
2. Is there a chance I could improve my life?
3. Is there a chance I could help my family, team, organization, etc. reach a new and better level?

Followed by this question:
4. What will happen if I choose not to take this risk?

For most people a list of regrets contains the risks they chose to NOT take rather than those they went for.

If 1, 2 & 3 are YES – then I say TAKE THE RISK!

If you are still feeling uncertain, look at 4. If your answer is “Nothing” – TAKE THE RISK!

Status Quo is fine for picnicking at the top of waterfalls. But if you see an opportunity to steal Home… Take a deep breath, focus on the plate, and run like heck!
Happy hiking!