The Next Step

It’s my belief that everyone has the potential for greatness and that the only thing that ever suppresses it is fear. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “They conquer who believe they can”, and in turn, they succeed who are willing to face their fear.
I would think that most of us have some intention, either one that we’ve clarified and stated or one that might even be drifting aimlessly in the back of our minds. I would further suggest that if acted upon with faith, perseverance and tenacity it becomes only a matter of time until it blossoms fully orbed into our experience. It is the action that brings it forward. To have a desire or dream and leave it idle is tantamount to buying an exercise machine and then not using it. It looks good and offers promise but without actually stepping on to it or into it, it is really no more than a wish. It is action that can make it so.

What is this fear that prevents us from accomplishing what we were born to experience? In my opinion, it has two sides. The first one is the fear of change; the second is a fear of failure. Many cling desperately to comfort, even if it is ineffective, painful and unfulfilling and many of us would unconsciously live without most anything rather than risk the perceived and feared ridicule of failure. This is what keeps us in a state of being unfulfilled. A question asked many times is, what would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail? And the punch line, of course, is that not doing it is a greater failure than unsuccessfully attempting it.
Here in the second week of the New Year, I would like to make a suggestion. I suggest that each of us take some action on our desires, even if it scares us. I suggest that we do something in the area of our dreams to make it so. Because here’s what I know, the moment we take the first step, the power of life puts before us the second, and so and so on. It’s written that the Buddha said, “even a journey of one thousand miles begins with the first step”. What I don’t want to do is stand still and not move for fear that he may have been right.

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