You ever stop at the crosswalk of a busy intersection where scores of people surround you, waiting to cross to the other side? Have you ever witnessed a moment when absolutely no cars are driving past, and there isn’t another car in sight?
99.97% of people stand there and wait until the orange hand disappears and the little white guy signals us to cross.
Why? Why do we wait?
Is it societal norms that keep us standing still until we’re “allowed” to cross? Do we feel like we’re breaking rules by crossing too early? Are we afraid of being judged if we cross too soon, thereby shattering the idea of what is considered “normal” or “right”?
It’s an interesting thought when you apply it to your life. Society’s expectations seem to limit us; they throw us in boxes labeled Acceptable, and if we attempt to displace ourselves or relocate ourselves outside the box, we’re immediately outcast. We’re no longer fitting inside this frame of “normal”.
The saddest part, at least to me, is when an individual feels confined to this box and is too paralyzed by fear to hop out of it. And it’s not like the walls of this box are unbelievably high, though they may sometimes seem that way.
Oftentimes these walls just exist within ourselves under the guise of insecurity, or fear of being judged, or fear of failure. Sometimes all it takes is a simple mind shift to move from the confines of this box to right outside its walls.
Once you’re outside, however, a whole new set of issues can arise. That old doubtful feeling, the hypnotizing buzz of critics and naysayers, your own mental limitations and inexperience.
When we’re paralyzed by this fear, whether behind these walls or directly outside of them, we rarely think long term or big picture. Thoughts such as these are often too vague and abstract. It’s too bad not enough people attempting to leave that box have this long term vision, otherwise they wouldn’t have chickened out so soon. They wouldn’t be so quick to hop back in.
If a number of seconds pass and no cars drive through the intersection, there tends to be one brave, pioneering soul who looks left, then right, then left and right again, and crosses. Rarely does this individual second guess himself, and I can guarantee he never doubles back. Once he builds momentum, he goes all the way to the other side.
What if you knew, that by taking one single step forward, you’d make it all the way? What if you knew that as long as you looked both ways and made sure no cars were coming, that you’d live to see the other side… that you’d make it to your destination?
Would you hesitate to cross? If you knew the box’s barriers weren’t high at all, would you make the leap to the other side?
If not, what’s holding you back?Tweet Follow @barroncuadro