“Going Off the Deep End” in Your Life
I am driving in northern Mexico not far from the city of Monterrey. There are 5 of us in a paneled van having just spent a few days in the beach town of Tampico where we were trying out our limited Spanish in hopes to get in with some of the locals. It is mid afternoon. I look out the window eyeing a simple Mexican farmer walking alongside a donkey-driven cart and then it strikes me. It could have been a lightning bolt, but it was not. It is a feeling that springs from the inner recesses of what I can only guess is my heart. And then I say it. “I quit.”
I have been forcing myself for three years to remain in what I can say is possibly the worst environment ever invented for my true self. It is the U.S. Air Force Academy. I cannot say that it is absolutely worst space for everyone. It just doesn’t work for me. It takes seeing a simple man walking along the road in a sparsely populated region in Mexico to wake up my intuition. I know that it is time to leave. I tell my traveling companions. As life would have it, it turns out to be one of the top 2 or 3 decisions of my life. At that moment it was the best by far.
Going off the deep end in my life never seems to be a prolonged decision making process. The intuition comes. It feels right and I act. Not exactly the scientific approach, but somehow it works. When I think about the process of going off the deep end, it seems to require a fair amount of trust, trust that it is the right decision, that things are going to work out. This means trusting in a positive future even when you cannot see it.
The force that keeps people from going off the deep end in their lives centers itself in the need to be safe and secure. It keeps them in the shallows never experiencing the deeper aspects of life. They remain conservative and timid about life even when it beckons them fully. Going off the deep end for me is a very pragmatic thing. I didn’t quit the Air Force Academy because of airy-fairy reasoning. I was just being real. It didn’t work for me. I want to be living in a life that works and gets results. By and large when we try to be too safe, we get meager results.
Take a leap, but be pragmatic. Leap into the things that give you positive results.