Monday, October 31, 2011

Weening Myself Off the Safety Net

Recently, I've had 3 instances that caused to question how reliant I was on external circumstances to guide me where I want to go. The 1st came when I used my phone to help me find an out of the way PC repair place, only to find that it lead to a spot blocks before the actual location, which lead to a ½ hour of searching to determine where it was. The 2nd was heading to take the last bus home, but finding that the service's website said there were no more coming; after a few minutes of the bus not coming at the appropriate time, I was getting ready to ride my scooter 4 miles home when it finally came in. The 3rd came during a chat with one of my classmates, where I learned that at the age of 18, he left home with only his bike and a bag of clothes and built himself up to point where he, with a help of some roommates, got a  job, a car & a decent sized house they collectively pay $2K on a month by the age of 20.

Aside from feeling like I was going a bit too slow, I began to examine how much I put it on things I couldn't really control to get what I wanted, especially over the course of my life when I felt limited in how I could rise up in the world. It was thanks to some friends that I got to experience life changing events, events that I would've surely given up on if they didn't talk me into it. For example, if my artist friend didn't convince me to give Americorps a try, I would've convinced myself I wasn't cut out to be a tutor at that level(and before that, I almost did).

On the romantic side of life, I've always prided myself on taking risks and doing things I never would've done otherwise, like riding 8 miles over a hill, inches away from traffic and through narrow, craggy sidewalks to reach the murky green waters of Long Beach. On the practical side, however, I always thought I didn't have the right stuff to do whatever job was at hand and couldn't summon the courage to even try in most cases.

I know it's because of this my life isn't as rich and fulfilling as it could be (which is saying a lot, considering how much life I've lived and how much I gained over the years), and that if I could overcome it, so much was waiting out here for me. As I see it, a big step towards that is doing what my classmate did at the age of 18 and move forward regardless of if I have the means then and there to lead the kind of life I desire.

Personally, I hate to fail at anything, and this goes double for when it involves people relying on me to get things done, so I'm always weary of anything that sends me into situations far beyond what I  thought I could do-as I've done so before and fell just short of getting it finished.  Perhaps when I accept failure as another part of life, I'll be able to deal with it quickly and let it strengthen me for the road ahead, so I may help others do the same.

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