Feel like taking a leap of faith? You’re watching a trapeze artist a hundred feet above you doing flips, catches, releases and all sorts of amazing feats. And you find yourself becoming overwhelmed with inspiration. As you study him you’re sure you actually can feel how he does it, your stomach sinking as he pulls himself up and summersaults in the air before catching the next trapeze that he has synchronized to meet him just as he dives at what was only a second before empty, deadly air.
You feel it, and so you step down from your seat in the bleachers. Walk purposefully across the dirt floor of the arena. Climb the narrow ladder a hundred steps up to the tiny plank that steps out above one-hundred feet of emptiness above the astonished crowd. You’re a little surprised that your hands aren’t even sweating as your reach out to grasp the chalk-powdered bar hanging above you. You take a deep breath, jump to gain momentum and out you go. You trust your inclination to take that leap of faith. You reach the top of your swing’s arc and… Release!
Maybe I’ve been using the wrong term all along. This blog, A Day On, isn’t about taking inspired leaps of faith. It is not about throwing caution to the wind and diving out of a perfectly good plane at 30,000 feet to after your dreams. It might not seem Romantic, but A Day On is kinda the opposite.
A little bit about the author. I’m cautious. As a kid I remember my mom pointing to a guy at the swimming pool with his head in one of those neck demobilizer “halos” that consist of bars of metal attached to a ring around the skull with screws drilled into a shaven head. She pointed at him when I was a little boy and said, “That’s what happens when you dive into water without knowing how deep it is.” Message received. I don’t dive into water. I get in and check the depth, look for submerged objects and watch a few others before I go off the board. A Day On is not about leaps of faith. I am afraid of leaping. And you’re probably like me with too much to lose. I would never recommend the leap of faith.
When we hear an Eddie Van Halen guitar solo we all feel like we can do it. When we see a Picasso painting we’re sure it’s simple. Great practitioners make it look simple. But we all need to practice our craft for a long time before we have the skills to improvise.
A Day On is about taking a daily leap of faith and then returning safely to our lives. It’s about taking a DAILY task and mastering it. It’s about slowly morphing into something beautiful and fully realized. You can’t cut open a chrysalis a day after it’s formed and expect to find a butterfly. A Day On is about entering into in earnest the process of change and development.
A Day On is as much about embracing the here and now as it is from escaping from it. It’s about providing a gift to your real life. The gift is a day of living the life you are all about rather than the ongoing, daily, dysfunctional denial of what we love in order to pay the bills that so many of us have become a slave to.
Good luck is where preparation meets opportunity. – Neil Peart
Emerson or Thoreau, I forget which, says that a man must till his own garden because it is all he has. A Day On is an account of my own cautious method of transition and growth. If you were to tell me that your dream is to own your own mechanic’s garage and that tomorrow you are taking your life’s savings and buying one, I would ask you what the essence of your passion is.
You might say that you really love being surrounded by the right kind of tools to diagnose and repair the broken car before you. You might say that you love the smell of grease and oil and gas. You love the dim lights of the shops you worked in years ago when you were going through college. You loved the feeling of returning the keys to a customer and the pride you felt when he started the engine and smiled at the sound.
And I would ask you, because I’m cautious, if you really need the overhead of a shop separate from your home. Couldn’t your garage serve you well for now as you develop the word-of-mouth for following you will need to pay the bills? Work in your garage with your son or daughter at your side. The thing is: this is about self-expression and self-preservation. I would caution against risk because I believe all can be gained without betting it all on the first hand. I want of us succeed wildly. I truly believe that a world where we are all satisfied and fulfilled is a much happier world.
I hate overhead. I think on a micro scale. What is the least amount that you will have to earn in order to keep your life afloat. I’ve discovered, in my first year of flying solo, that I was so busy I didn’t have time to waste money – nor did I have the desire. My entertainment was the very real “video game” of keeping my business on track, loving my time to be creative, working wherever I wanted…
I suppose my emptiness that before had to be fed with buying things and overeating must have been being satisfied through my work. I hardly used any gas because I didn’t need to drive hours per week to and from work. The minimum that I would have to make in order to not report in at the corporate office every day was pretty minimal. But, it didn’t happen the day I conceived A Day On. In fact it took me three years of networking, doing projects after my 9-5 job, saving, and developing my business, before I took what to my friends might have seemed like a leap of faith.
The virtuoso musician, trapeze artist, life artist practices hours per day at what he does and because of all the hours he has put in he has eventually transitioned into – morphed into what we now see before us.
I don’t think of A Day On as a method for a leap of faith. I see it as a daily regimen of dropping pebbles into an abyss at the edge of life until the chasm is filled in and we have walked across.
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