Dive In or Slow and Steady? Refections on Moving Forward
Sometimes in life we have those moments where we have to test new waters.
Some of us run up and dive right in. Excited by the experience, living in the moment, and not thinking too much about the consequences of our actions. These risk takers are the ones that many of us look up to. Those enigmatic and exciting people who seem to dance their way through life without a care in the world. They are the kind of people each of us in some little (or big) way, would like to be.
Some of us like to know the risks before we enter.
We might put a foot or a toe in to check water temperature, or perhaps find a height vantage point to check the water for any submerged dangers. While these careful folk might not be as exciting to be around as the extreme risk taking bunch, they are often still the first in the water, it’s just that their entrance isn’t as dramatic as their extroverted ‘dance through life’ counterpart. Then there are others who only want to enter waters tested by others: these are the followers. These followers shouldn’t be discounted for their lack of pioneering spirit. In fact, the first person to follow the leader is actually more important than the leader. The leader is generally just some ‘lone nut’ with a passion for swimming. On their own they will only ever be a person in a lake, ocean or river, nothing more and nothing less. The first person to follow is the catalyst for change. As that second person in they are indicating that the ‘lone nut’ swimming around a lake is in fact onto a good thing. Now there are two in the lake (neither of which have been eaten by a loch ness monster or hit their head on a submerged shopping trolley) others will be tempted to join. All of a sudden the idea of swimming is in vogue and the lake, beach, loch, wading pool (whatever water body you choose) is the place to be seen! Don’t believe me? Check out this phenomenal demonstration on leadership lessons from Derek Sivers with the help of ‘Dancing Guy‘. There are those folks just don’t like to swim and would prefer to opt out from risky business altogether and there is nothing wrong with having your feet securely on dry land!
Whether you are literally planning to go swimming or just want to make a change in your life, there are times when you may feel the urge to dive in. You may have noticed that I’ve been a little preoccupied of late. It’s because I’ve been donning my bikinis and testing the waters (in some cases this can be taken literally… the beach is one of my mental saviours). I am not an exciting ‘leap in’ type when it comes to life changes. As an introvert, a Virgo, a scientist, a lover of peanut butter (and any other label I would like to give myself as an excuse for my carefulness) change happens slowly and steadily for me. As many of you who have been reading for a little while know, I gave up project management of a plant science project late 2014 in order to take up studying my masters. This was my ‘toe in the water’ moment. One year in and the water temps are feeling great so for the last few weeks I have been getting prepped to dive all the way in. Even though the data compiling process nearly sent me insane, my major plant revegetation project is done and my plant babies are now ready for delivery to their offset site. With this delivery the burden of hundreds of lives will be lifted from my shoulders. A statement that may sound a tad dramatic or grandiose but when you have poured so much heart and soul (and money… not mine but project grant money) into growing vulnerable or endangered plants it can be pretty stressful trying to keep them alive and the thought of death plays on your mind on a daily basis. Can’t wait to send them free range and lift my mind from the worry of unexpected plant deaths.
My New Adventure
As of March I am diving into full time study with just some minor manual labour, lab training, and general on call assistance in the plant science field. No more career related emotional investment outside of my sustainability education focused Masters and my communications with you here. My life will now have greater focus on sustainability and social science. This has been a scary because my main source of income is plant science and as a part owner of a mortgage on a very much ‘falling-down’ sort of house it seems counterintuitive to be studying full time. However I have been working towards some new ventures that will benefit my lovely readers while giving me the abundance I require to continue my studies and keep Sustainability in Style an advertising free publishing platform. I still have quite a bit of work to do before I can share these alternate ventures with you but for now I am revelling in the joy of completion of one chapter of my life and the movement towards the next. I celebrated on Sunday with my lovely yoga instructor Hannah at a Chakra yoga workshop (something I will talk about a little later in the week for anyone who lurves yoga) which just so happened to be exactly what I needed post-data-entry. I promise that as soon as my other ventures are good to go you will be the first to hear about them.
In the mean time I want to offer my many thanks to all of you for your kindness, support and the discussion you bring to each and every day of my life. Blogging has been a joyous and busy ride thus far and has taken me to corners of the global network I would never have expected in my wildest dreams. It has been many long hours of computer time but it has been the most enjoyable and rewarding experience of my career. I look forward to sharing a connected future with you and seeing where Sustainability in Style goes next because truthfully I have no idea where it will end up! It’s an epic adventure with a mind of it’s own. So much gratitude to you all.
Have you ever made a big life leap? Want the share it with us? No worries if it didn’t work out to plan sometimes that’s when we learn the most! Please feel free to share stories of success or perceived failures in the space below.