This morning I took a risk and looked my wife in the eyes. We ended the night before with an argument, one that we sorta patched up, but one can never know when it’s just time to go to bed. So when she walked in the kitchen for breakfast, I had a moment where I thought maybe I wouldn’t quite look her in the eyes. You know, say good morning and side glance her and cover it up with looking like I was in a hurry getting the boys breakfast.
But I didn’t do that. Two roads diverged in the kitchen, and I took the road less traveled. I looked at her. She was smiling. It felt warm and kind. She asked if she could hug me. And that was something special. She thanked me too for a few of the things I said after the fight. I could have missed all that in a moment, had I not risked saying good morning with my eyes.
By any measure, that was a teeny little risk. Some would pass it off as no risk at all. And maybe that’s because risk is a label we usually reserve for big stuff. Like rope-less free solos of El Capitan.
Your life will have a few big risks. But a bazillion more little risks. You may one day pack up your life to live in a far off country. Or you may risk an afternoon checking out that new park down the street. There’s asking someone to marry you. And there’s asking someone to forgive you. Different size adventures, all rewarding if taken, all getting you where you want to go.
There’s a life you want, one you’ve dreamed about and imagined. These dreams are how we enter the future. In many ways, our imagination is the only place the future exists. Your desires and your fears compete to write that future.
Some say we achieve our dreams with really hard work. The hustle. But I’d say the hustle is just life. You’re going to work hard regardless of if you dream. Life has a way of taking us all to the mats. We inhabit the future of our dreams by risk. That’s the only way. If you don’t risk, your life will be spent hustling to manage fear. You don’t want that life.
I have lots of dreams with my wife. And for sure I dream of good morning hugs more than lonely breakfasts made by fear. I got that the other day with a little risk. She leads the way with her own. It was small stuff with big rewards.