From the film Gladiator.

How to Take Risks

Let’s start with a quote that changed my life and it might change yours too. Read it carefully, embrace its wisdom with open arms, and let it simmer in your mind.

“It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best knows achievement and who at the worst if he fails at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.” — Theodore Roosevelt

I’ve been afraid at so many points in my life and I always thought it was a weakness. We’re taught from such a young age that we’re either afraid or we’re daring. But as I read these wise words, it becomes clear that teaching is a false dichotomy. Bravery is being afraid and still showing up.

For the past few months, I’ve taken a lot of risks and I was afraid for every single one of them. But that’s not a flaw. It’s the human condition. We all experience fear, every single day of our lives. The only difference is whether we keep moving forward or not.

So, dear reader, I implore you to jump into the arena and spend your time in a cause you find worthy. Yes, you will fail more times than you’ll succeed. Yes, people will criticize you more times than they’ll praise you. Yes, you’ll work hard and might not be recognized for any of it. That’s the price we pay to take risks. But, the benefits of taking risks is living a life filled with wisdom and wonder that will leave a lasting impact on the lives around us. Be brave, my dear reader. Be brave, because I don’t want to be the only one.

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