Taking a plunge is scary. Taking that first step is the hardest. Taking that leap is unsafe.
That's the point. To know life without fear is to experience life without success. Yes, failures are a side-product of that, but in the end, is it worth it? I can undoubtedly say...absolutely.
A year ago, I had one of the scariest experiences of my life. I lost my job. That security. That dependable safe guard. The thing I counted on. It was gone, and I couldn't do anything to stop it. For months, I applied to any job within my field. I then started applying to jobs outside of my field. Months went by without any responses; it was looking pretty bleak. I started working odd jobs and taking on anything to pay the bills, even selling some of my beloved musical equipment.
Then a risk happened. A man called me to ask some advice. He was taking a trip to the Grand Canyon with his paralyzed father. This was Randy Headings. He was orchestrating a family trip. His dad, two brothers, and eight of the grandsons. They were going to carry grandpa down the Grand Canyon, and his question was, "What kind of camera should I bring?". We talked for about an hour about equipment, and at the end of the chat I joked, "You know, it would be really awesome if I just went with you and did the video myself".
Randy replied, "Are you serious?" while laughing.
I said, "Would you seriously consider it?" also laughing.
There it was. A chance. The family talked it over, and later asked me to come with them. I accepted and packed my things.
Was I a hiker?
No. I didn't even own hiking boots.
Was I sponsored by anybody?
No. The family gave me their budget for doing it, and I accepted.
Did I know what was going to happen?
No. Nobody did.
But I jumped in with both feet. What happens if you get hurt? What about potential jobs back home? What happens when you get back? How are you going to afford to do 3 months worth of work?
The questions fell by the wayside because I was too busy jumping. Well...descending. Into the Grand Canyon with a family I had just recently met.
Today (March, 31st 2016) marks a year that I was climbing out of the Grand Canyon behind Bob Headings and his family. I had blisters on my feet that wouldn't heal for six months. I was sun burnt. We ran out of water. We had one day to make it out, and that day was ending fast. I couldn't lift my arms to hold my camera. I felt things pop that I didn't think went "pop" in my legs.
It was awful, but it was a risk. My risk. My sucky, sweaty, sore, risk.
It was also one of the best accomplishments of my life. Hiking down and up the Grand Canyon with 30 pounds of camera equipment in addition to my gear. I became apart of a family that valued each other so dearly. But this was just the beginning...
Fast forward to one month later.
I got a call from a lady claiming that she was from The Today Show. I couldn't believe it. She saw the story of the Headings family and wanted to push it on the show for Father's Day. That quickly grew to so many people picking up the story.
I can't thank the Headings family enough for giving me a chance. That chance changed my life and career. I can't thank God enough for allowing this door to open. You can google me now. I've always wanted that.
Now with over half a million views and thousands of shares. With dozens of emails I received from people who told me the story gave them hope and courage. You tell me whether that risk was worth it.
So now you go jump. Whatever it is. Jump hard. It will be worth it, I promise.