Do you agree with the following statement?

“I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you can see all kinds of things you can’t see from the center.” 

– Kurt Vonnegut

You may see all and experience all but is that what you really want in life?

I myself don’t want to experience the bad and the ugly – only the good. Staying where it’s safe is better for me.

I don’t go to scary movies. I don’t like the experience of being scared. I think it is very weird some people do. Obviously, humans are the only animals that do that. You don’t see a wolf walk to the end of a cliff and look over the edge to freak himself out.

Ignoring The Signs

I have always lived near the water. It has been my respite in life. Whether lake, river or ocean the pulsating energy you get is rejuvenating.

One day at the beach I noticed the water was sectioned off into a swimming area. This special area was sanctioned where swimming was safe. A lifeguard was on guard as added safety.

Little did anyone know what lurked beyond those safety ropes. Glistening sunlight and calm on the surface, but below giant undertows churned in each direction. Strong currents enough to challenge the best swimmers.

There are always the risk takers that ignore the signs and travel beyond and end up in dangerous territory.

Fatal endings are a useless lesson.

We can enjoy all the beauty and safety of this recreation area if we just listen to the experts.

Living On The Edge

When you challenge those boundaries, you are living on the edge.

When you are on the edge can you really see all and experience all? Or, are you distracted by the foreshadowing of what might happen if you succumb to the ever-present danger.

A fleeting glance of beauty can not outweigh losing your step and falling.

Living life on the edge is tempting fate.

It is an exhilarating way to live. Some people love the rush.

Getting too close to the edge and falling can have disastrous effects on you and people around you.

The Edge

The edge can be …

  • Risk taking
  • Procrastination
  • Ignoring problems
  • Perilous lifestyle
  • Addiction

“Living at risk is jumping off the cliff and building your wings on the way down.”

– Ray Bradbury

It’s not like you are unaware of your situation. It’s there, you just choose to push it away.

Cover up the feelings with other distractions.

Sometimes pretend it’s not there.

“Running away from any problem only increases the distance from the solution…so solve it!” 

– Okon Nya

Changing Direction

Nothing in life stays the same. You are always moving forward or backward.

To change direction is difficult. We are hardwired with repetition. Most of our existence is on autopilot. If we don’t make an effort to change directions, we will be a slave to our bodies – the path of least resistance.

When I was dealing with a lot of health problems it felt overwhelming. To improve my health seemed like a full-time job.

Sleep deprivation, overweight, autoimmune issues. It was crushing my spirit. The closer I got to the edge of what felt like death I was scared.

Death was falling off the cliff.

I was not ready to die.

Then I saw this…

“Every problem has in it the seeds to its own solution.”

– Norman Vincent Peale

What was my seed? I had so many problems.

Making It Manageable

Breaking it down:

“You can never ever use weight loss to solve problems that are not related to your weight. At your goal weight or not you still have to live with yourself and deal with your problems…you will still have the same life.  Losing weight is not a cure for life.” 

– Phil McGraw

My seed to every problem was not the weight loss.

It was its own seed. It will have a ripple effect on other problems but not a solution.

So, with a different mind set, I turned around slowly and started to walk away from the edge (of overwhelm).

In the blink of an eye that statement empowered me.

Why? It made my challenges manageable.

Every problem I had revolved around “if I only lose weight, it will solve all my problems. That’s a big boulder to move. Procrastination replaced progress. It was too big and overwhelming as I rolled to the edge.

Breaking each problem down makes it manageable.

Baby Steps

Inch by inch away from the abyss.

I added one new thing a day to move in a positive direction. Even that was empowering. It didn’t solve everything but moving in the right direction I experienced progress.

A little effort made me feel stronger and in control.

Not a victim succumbing to a weakened spirit and body.

“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used creating them.” 

– Albert Einstein

So, if weight loss isn’t going to erase all my issues, then that makes it easier.

The pressure is off.

Other problems will have to wait.

You can eat an elephant one bite at a time.

The first bite, weight loss.

The same holds true for difficulties that take you to the brink of change.

Small bites moving in a positive direction.

Over time the elephant disappears.

Taking Responsibility

Taking responsibility for your life is the key. No magical potion will extend that cliff’s edge.

It is there. If you don’t change your habits, you will reach it and the consequences can be life altering.

“I see someone desperately hanging onto the cliff-edge … with bleeding shredded fingernails and gritted teeth, wanting all the while just to let go and scream her tired heart out as she fell.”

– Sharon Blackie

Don’t be a victim. You have the power within to change.

“A problem is only a problem when viewed as a problem.  All change is hard at first, messy in the middle, gorgeous at the end.”

– Robin S. Sharma
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