To Dare

I recently discovered a quote from the 19th century Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard. In his day, he was considered an iconoclast—a loner yet outspoken, dressed differently than the norm and apparently had a pretty wild 1970’s-style Rod Stewart haircut. In short, sort of a weird dude. But he advanced the notion of living life on one’s own terms and being in the here-and-now versus the more theoretical notions of Man and God that were popular at the time. These were vestiges, to Kierkegaard, of what we would now call “old school” thinking. He was way ahead of his time and judged harshly by his contemporaries.

He said “To dare is to lose one’s footing momentarily. Not to dare is to lose onself.” That is a bold statement, yet so insightful in my judgment. And the accounts of Kierkegaard’s life indicate he definitely walked his own talk. It also reminds me of Eleanor Roosevelt’s famous saying—“try do to something every day that scares you.”

It all got me to thinking about what I would dare to do in 2011, stepping out of my comfort zone to try something new, take a risk without worrying too much about the outcome. I am still pondering the question—don’t have an answer yet. But I will come up with something that feels right after checking-in with my heart and my head. And I would pose the same question to you. What might you dare to do in 2011? What crazy, risky, courageous, wonderful thing have you been thinking about doing—for a long time—that you just have not pulled the trigger on yet? Is it something completely new and exhilirating, is it a conversation with someone you’ve been putting off, is it letting go of stuff from your past that is dragging you down?

Whatever IT is, I hope you dare to take action. Because instead of losing yourself, you will discover new truths about you that have been there all along.

Dick Schulte