Make opportunities happen for yourself
As a child I was always afraid of water. I never learnt swimming. Few years ago, I fell into the water and I almost drowned. Since then, I developed a trauma and I was even more scared of water than I was before.
Everytime I went somewhere on vacation near a beach or when I went on trips with my friends in summer, I couldn’t go deep into the water since I couldn’t swim and because of the trauma I had.
But today I’m not going to talk about my swimming skills. It’s something similar related to my life motto and I hope to inspire other people as well with that.
This motto helped me personally a lot to overcome fears, traumas and especially when it comes to personal development. There is no limit. I apply this quote also to my professional goals and for any other situation in my life.
What does it mean to jump in at the deep end?
If you jump in at the deep end, you put yourself in a completely new situation. You start doing something new without any help or preparation.
We probably all have this situation when we feel like to break the ice, but at the same time we are blocked and scared to do it.
But if you still jump in at the deep end, you get to experience something new and you grow through a new challenge that you tackle.
It starts with simple things in daily life. I’m going to share two of them.
For example, in school our teacher once asked us, if someone wants to present their idea in front of the class. Of course, no student raised their hand because it was not compulsory. Even when I felt insecure, I often just raised my hand and I did a presentation voluntarily in front of my class. Thus, I learnt a lot through all the feedbacks I got from teachers and students, as well as boost my self-confidence every time I did that.
This is something I developed over years. In primary school teacher would tell my parents that I’m not that active in class, or that I don’t ask enough questions. I had the image of being a shy student. But that drastically changed over those years.
The thing is, I was always a curious girl, but often I didn’t had the courage to ask my questions or just ask simply others for help. One day I just decided to change that and to do it anyway. Now, I’m known for being this crazy, curious, active girl, who would bombard teachers and other people with all my crazy questions anytime I had the chance. I question things critically and I’m always willing to learn new things on a consistent basis. I see challenges as opportunities.
Another example is, when I worked the first time at the age of 15 during my apprenticeship in the hotel. In the first year I was at the Front Desk and Event Department. We had many upcoming events going on in the hotel.
During the first few months I worked there, I got informed that our Event Manager was sick and therefore, will not be able to lead the events with me. So it was planned to postpone many of these events in the last moment since I it was also new to me. But at that time I felt like to take the courage to make the best out of it without my Event Manager. I told them I would lead the events by myself with the knowledge I had so far, communicate with other departments to coordinate and just clarify a few things I was not sure about. I basically threw myself into the cold water even though I was insecure.
At the end, it turned out to be one of the most amazing weeks I had. When my Event Manager came back healthy, I felt proud to say that I handled the situation well by myself and that I learnt a lot of new things.
Other examples when I jumped in at the deep end:
Situations in school for better results at workplaces when I overcame myself when having the chance to train and show my skills in a given situation; in personal development to overcome ego; in friends circles to help friends to jump together in at the deep end; when dealing with family problems to break the ice of silence, initiate to talk actively about problems and find solutions together; and in many other situations in life.
I got to know about topics that I never heard before and I found the things I love and realized about the things I really don’t like. It’s about to explore and make opportunities happen for yourself.
What I also learnt it later to focus on the things that truly matters and on the things you feel passionate about. We cannot continue endlessly just exploring and not moving forward. But I believe, we first need to explore in order to find the right focus.
Sometimes we need to lose ourselves in order to find ourselves.
Other people might throw you anyway into the water
I think at some point of our life, we will get anyway thrown into the deep end from someone. If you don’t like to present yourself and run away from, I think at some point of your life, you will be confronted again with the same situation. For instance, when you need to go on a job interview you need to express yourself.
Why deep end?
Deep because, if you are only swimming around at the surface, you will be like all other people who have the same general knowledge about something. But if you are willing to dive deep, you will be able to gain specialized knowledge in something particular and experience things that other people didn’t experience.
When you are in deep water. You might be in a dangerous or vulnerable situation. It can get serious, when it is too difficult or when it is beyond of one’s abilities. But it’s okay. Every beginning is hard and scary.
In order to survive in the deep water you need to have the courage, endurance and the willingness to be an expert in something. Along the way you gain new experience and I believe we mostly learn things by doing it ourselves.
Dive deeper, so you will gain more knowledge and experience to master it and make it better than you did in the past.
Another reason why diving deep is important is the fact that you have the courage to pursue your dreams. Don’t let other people with smaller minds make you feel insecure. They will never understand. That’s why, go so deep into the water, that you cannot hear their them anymore. You can do it.
Water represents life. It can be associated with birth, fertility, and refreshment. Water is one of the four elements essential to life in traditional western philosophy. It symbolize a purification of the soul, and an admission into the faith.
Everyone has another way how to deal with stress. But when I personally feel stressed out, I go to the lake or try to be somewhere close to the water. I just take the time to be there with myself, reflect about life, breathe and just be present at that moment. It calms me down.
I mainly let my stress out on my passions, such as playing the piano, listening to music, draw, paint, write, do sports and to be outside in the nature. It also helps to talk with friends and family. It’s important to keep our mind fresh. When everything gets too much take a break, don’t quit. Continue again after you reload new energy and surround yourself with people who motivates you.
Have faith in yourself.
There is this famous quote saying:
It’s true. We often stand ourselves in the way. It’s the fear that blocks us. It’s the fear to fail, to embarrass ourselves in front of other people and that we often just think too much. In the end, we don’t do it.
We need to overcome ourselves. There is no person in the world you should compete with or compare yourself. The only person you should compare yourself with is the person you were yesterday. A small progress is already step closer to your goal. Celebrate every single progress you made for yourself. No matter how many drawbacks or failures you had, just keep on walking, it will be fine.
It takes a lot of courage in our lives to make a clear decision and to go through a dream despite other impairments in this vast universe. But when something frightens us, that’s exactly what ultimately develops and unfolds us the most. We only know when we try.
I think the biggest mistake we can make is, when we regret not having done something in our life. Time and missed chances can unfortunately not be turned back, so take the chance when you can.
Follow your heart, pursue your goals and never explain yourself to anyone. You don’t need anyone’s approval. Life your life, jump in at the deep end, break the ice and do what makes YOU happy. Who knows what new opportunities might arise from this.
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One day I just decided to learn swimming. This, because I wanted to overcome my trauma and I know that being able to swim has a lot of advantages in life. I took the courage to go inside the water and start with some small exercises to learn swimming. I started doing these exercises where I could stand. Later, I try to float on the water to build up trust to the water. I just tried over and over again to gain more courage and go everytime deeper into the water, until I was able to swim.
This applies to all other things in life. Everything starts with a single step. You just need the courage to ask for it, to dare making the first step and jump in at the deep end.
I can promise you, it will change your life forever.