Risks, Beauty, and Setting Aside the Challenges for the Sake of Progress

It doesn’t happen every day, but there are times when I find myself thinking about choices that I’ve made that I can’t help but suspect have held me back. On mornings like this one where the weather has everyone making slower than usual starts (at least in my corner of the world), it’s all too easy to get caught up.

There’s beauty in the world – even in the snowstorms. There’s art to be made, music to be made, and books to be written. But more often than not, there’s a tendency to leave the creating to the creative types – to think that there’s no way we could accomplish capturing our vision. As a result, we make a choice, conscious or not, to play it safe. We choose not to confront our inner critics and high expectations, push aside the thoughts that “maybe it’s possible,” and end up not moving forward in the ways we’d like.

But what if playing it safe only manages to trap us where we already are? What are we denying if we don’t push through?

“If you don’t take a risk then how are you going to make something really beautiful that hasn’t been seen before?” ~ Francis Ford Coppola

I think that it’s time to quit saying no to calculated risks. I think it’s time to quit saying no to passion, to creativity, and to a belief that obstacles can be overcome. I think it’s time to create something beautiful.

What I’m driving at is this: Even if the only beautiful thing that we ever give back to the world is our own true self – even if we’re not artists, writers, moviemakers, or designers – we need to take the risk of creating that. We all need to focus more on what we have to offer, on what we can do, and on what we hope to accomplish.

And then we need to find a way to make it happen.

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