I was talking to a friend the other day and he told me a 28-year long story through adulthood. It was the story of always taking the straight road, the safe road. He wondered where he might be today if he had played it a little less safe and taken a right turn or even a "wrong" turn here or there. "Even if it ended up a dead end and I had to do a u-turn and start all over again, maybe I would be in a happier place now and I would know that at least I tried something new, something different."

So, safe isn't always best? It may be a good query to think about. Does safe mean you are less likely to take risks? If that is the case then I definitely have NOT stayed on the straight road. I seem to be attracted to risks or they are attracted to me. What leads us to make certain choices? Is it based on hunches or gut feelings? Maybe we rely on our experience or past? Perhaps we use knowledge and wisdom as our guide.

Wisdom is the coming together of knowledge and experience: the knowing how to use the knowledge you have gained based upon common sense (that we sometimes lack) and the experiences that we have already trudged through. Often times, we ignore the answer we receive from the wisdom we have gained because we do not want that answer. We don't want to leave the path we are on, to take the risk. We enjoy the coasting because making a turn might be uncomfortable. We might have to stretch a bit. We might have to think a smidge more.

If you did make that turn and it became very clear that it was the wrong turn, that maybe now you had to turn back and find the straight road, once more, what have you really lost? A little time, a little confidence, maybe. But what have you gained? I know you know this one, of course you have gained wisdom. You have added one more notch in your gut. You have built a decision-making platform where you can stand, looking all about you, giving you a better vantage point.

Use your wisdom. Take a risk. It doesn't get much worse than failing to burn.

by rayannethorn

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I like your analogy with the match Rayanne.
We are all products of our experiences and all of us carry baggage that keeps us from taking risks or taking too many. If you are looking back with "what ifs" you are failing to appreciate the person you are which you became by doing things exactly the way you did. Whew, that was a long sentence!

Anyway, taking risks is simply a matter of forging ahead without being afraid of making mistakes. If you forge ahead enough times and make enough mistakes you come to realize that mistakes aren't going to kill you. I have a flat spot on my Italian forehead from smacking it every time I've screwed up but if I fix my hair just right it hardly shows!

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