I did something this weekend that took me outside of my comfort zone. After suiting up with harnesses and learning the safety rules, I took my fear of heights and trekked up a hill to climb a rope ladder onto a platform 50 feet high that swayed a back and forth in the wind.
Then on cue, I jumped off to sail through the air at Seven Springs Mountain Resort on a zipline. I had thought about it for the past year and decided it was time to take the leap of faith – and just do it.
Not only did it I grow from the experience; it taught me lessons of leadership I was able to bring home.
To conquer a goal, you have to want it more than you fear it.
People like Gary Wandel, who live for adventure, inspired me. Seeing photos and reading about ziplines at Seven Springs moved me. And my daughter, Alyssa, who just earned her graduate degree and is on the brink of starting her career, supported me. I wanted to do this to better me and to inspire her. The thing I feared more than ziplining was staying where I was.
To grow, get out of your circle.
I didn’t want to zipline with a family member or a friend. I wanted to zipline with strangers. This way, I’d have to rely on my own courage and faith to see me through. I also wanted to meet people who I otherwise wouldn’t know. In our group of seven, I joined six members of the Jaime family, who were visiting from Mexico. They were fun, confident and relaxed. Their example made me more brave to be flying solo.
To move forward, trust in the people around you.
Our guides, Kensie and Phil, knew their jobs inside and out. I trusted in their knowledge to lead us and I trusted that the equipment they were managing would keep us in the air until it was time to put our feet back on the ground. When you trust in people and allow them do their jobs, great things can happen.
To reach your goal, focus only on what matters.
When I was walking on the bridge, I realized the ground below didn’t matter. The only thing that did matter was the wooden board I was stepping on and the one that was next. Everything else was just a blur. The journey to your next goal should be like that too.
To do what you love, you’ve got to love what you do.
We were a team on a mission – To push ourselves to new heights and to have fun. Instead of looking for purpose in your life, give purpose to the life you live. No matter what you do, take pride in your efforts and see the bigger picture of how what you do impacts others.
You know that comfort zone; that place where things come easy? It’s time to get out of it. Whether it’s your education, your job, your business, or the mile you ran today – take it to the next level. It’s time to grow.