About a year and a half ago, I went to an “aerial forest park” with a few people for a birthday party. The party was for a child, but the kid in me looked forward to tackling each obstacle and zip lining through the trees.
We went through the mini training on how to use the equipment, and then it was time to “slay” the course. I climbed to the top of what I like to call a small fortress. (By time I got the top, I was winded—guess I was not as in shape as I thought). There were fifteen different courses that varied from beginner, intermediate, to advanced. Although, I was VERY much a beginner, I refused to start there. I chose to begin with one of the intermediate courses and led part of our group with me.
As I led the group, we climbed to the middle of a tree and faced our first challenge. I am not going to lie; I was frightened or can I say a little panic-stricken. Before me was a bridge with wooden planks spaced apart. There was a very thin cable on the left side of the bridge for you to hold to while you literally, “walked the plank”. I stepped on the first plank and my legs shook. With each step, it seemed like the planks were spaced further and further apart. I made it about a fourth of the way and it was clear, I was not going to make it.
My legs were so wobbly they made the bridge swing side to side. I remember stopping and thinking, if I fell would the harness catch me or would I plummet to my death. My group could tell I wasn’t going to make it. One of the ladies yelled, “Lean into the rope.” I was holding onto the rope for dear life instead of leaning into the rope for support. I was unsure if the cable could hold my weight, but I was so desperate I was willing to try anything. Once I shifted my weight and allowed the cable to do the work for me, I breezed through the obstacle with no problem.
That is kinda like life. How many times have you devised a plan and tried to complete it alone, but midway through you are frightened, shaky and ready to quit. The weight of life is not for us to carry on our own; we all need a rope for us to lean on.
For some people your “ROPE” is…
They say if you want to make God laugh, tell him YOUR plans. He can support ALL of your weight plus more. Many times, you may feel as though you are alone and God is not hearing your prayers. Looking back, you can see where He added an extra plank in between the gaps to make your walk a little bit easier.
2. A good friend/mentor
Life is lonely if you don’t have anyone to share it with. I am not talking about your spouse or significant other, but a great friend who will laugh and cry with you when faced with difficult challenges. Your “rope” will support you AND tell you when you are wrong. Let’s face it, sometimes we come up with some crazy plans.
I recommend at some point in everyone’s life to speak with a therapist. We all carry emotional baggage from our childhood, past relationships, loss, disappointments, heartbreak, negative experiences, trauma, etc. (S)He is someone who is a neutral party to whom you can dump all of your problems. They can assist you with development of skills that help you cope and overcome challenging situations. Your therapist is the “rope” that allows you to navigate through life while being unapologetically you.
The next time life gives you a challenge and you are ready to give up—don’t forget to lean into the rope.
– Living Your Life on the Offense