Yin, Yang, Yeah It’s Cool

Ahh the life of an entrepreneur. On one hand, it’s this life of truly incredible freedom, being able to literally do whatever you want, whenever you want. Hop on a plane at a moment’s notice, work from wherever you are, execute plans of your own inspired design, etc. This is most definitely why I am so drawn to entrepreneurship. I LOVE that feeling of being in control of my own destiny, having no one to answer to, no one holding me back, and having no ceiling on my, and my business’s, potential. Truly amazing. And f*cking FUN. It’s a lifestyle I couldn’t have even conjured five years ago.

Roller coaster terror funThen there’s the other side of it, the completely terrifying no-shit-this-really-is-all-up-to-me-what-if-I-can’t-do-it-holy-sh*t-ahhhhh! part of it. Those days when your brain is flooded with negative what-ifs, confidence is shaky at best, and fear gets the better of you such that you cry randomly on the phone to your coach and have to talk the whole half hour to figure out why you’re crying in the first place. (*cough*… me on Monday… *cough*cough*)

I mean, the inherent definition of freedom implies insecurity. So with the joy of complete freedom, in theory we also get the terror of full-on vulnerability. Every so often it’ll hit me like it’s this brand new thought… that for reals, no f*cking joke, I’ve done this. I’ve quit my job that provided me a predictable and dependable paycheck, to take this chance on myself and my dream. Amazing, yes, and did I mention terror yet? Just checking.

See, I like to think I’m a hard core person.. and most of the time, I think I am. I mean, man, some of the crap I’ve done– my entire skydiving career, college choices, prolific and spontaneous travel, my external honesty experiment, etc.– I don’t know how else I’d describe it. Perhaps obsessive.. extremist… haha yeah, hard core seems the coolest description at this point. But anyway, even with that gene of courage, I still have days of weakness. I still have days where I feel like poop, breakdown, and succumb to my fears.

The bigger thing I’m pondering though is the simple yin-and-yang nature we can see in pretty much everything. These are just a couple of examples I’m seeing for myself lately. What examples of this are you seeing in your life? Anything Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde? Dr. Banner/Incredible Hulk? Fun/UN-fun? Free/Frightening? Anything that started one way, and is now looking another? If so, do you think it will sway back?

I actually think that last question is the key.. and the bigger insight that always helps me out of my slumps… that it always swings back. Understanding that entrepreneurship is inherently infused with both freedom and insecurity, and I can expect to feel both. And in expecting to feel both, oddly I’m not so worried in the moments of terror. Because on the back end, I know it’s just part of the deal, and I’ll yaw back to awesome as soon as I get some sleep, go for a run, or write a sh*t-hot email to one of my kick-a** clients. Or this blog post. hehe Boom, booyah, back in action! 😉

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About Melanie Curtis

Melanie Curtis is a life coach, writer, speaker, world traveler, art lover, movie-maker, professional skydiver, devoted family member, fierce friend, and Founder and CEO of melaniecurtis.com and Highcomms LLC. Melanie goes huge in all aspects of her life, living her version of “the dream,” and helps other people live theirs too through coaching, education, transformative conversations, and no-nonsense accountability.

4 thoughts on “Yin, Yang, Yeah It’s Cool”

  1. The inherent anxiety to which is prevalent in those that have concerns for the provisioning of their future securities is often a product of their superstitions. Superstition, the fear of the unknown, has been cataclysmic to our specie’s history throughout the ages. Where a simple few, in comparison, have mastered the skill that triumphs the fear over our choices, I can not be lead to believe the power, or loss thereof, is anything more than a state of mind – not unlike laughter.

    This blog post hit the proverbial “nail on the head” for my own life. Should I move on and have a supposedly better life or should I remain ever so enslaved to a financial and a future security? On the one hand, my drudgeries are a way to provide the paths to make me happy but the dues must be paid in order to reap the happiness that I still have to decide to gain. On the other, I can make a choice that results in absolute happiness, or absolute failure, or anything in between despite how statistically reasoned my positioning was on the choice I had made.

    Education is a good place to start right? Well, statistically speaking this is correct and 10’s of millions benefit from this theory very well. Although, blood letting was considered a good idea at one point and John Nash Sr. disproved 150 years of economic theory, as established by Adam Smith, in his dissertation… went on to ascertain a Nobel Prize for it.

    And then there is the pressures of social opinion. Social opinion, a despot in it’s own right, is a painstaking process we are all forced to endure, skydivers especially. I can say I don’t care and while I may not it is still effective in the choices I make because it provides a path of minimal resistance. And we wouldn’t be humans if we could follow that outline and still not be accepted by our peers.

    So what is it? What is the key to a solid state of mind or perhaps the courage to a steady first step towards difference, happiness… peace? I haven’t found it yet and not sure when I will but one thing is for certain: you have done far better than most of us just because you have had the courage to endure loss and insecurity at a chance for happiness.

    …Maybe that’s it.

  2. Wow, Colin.. thank you so much for that thoughtful, insightful, and honest reply. Straight-up awesome. My eyes are crossing because it’s so late and I have to get up so early, but courage sticks out on this topic for me… that if we use it to blaze through even one fear and see that we survive and often thrive because of such a leap.. it encourages us to do that more and more… and before we know it, it’s our approach to life. I think this is what happened to me. I took one leap and taught myself to take more and more.. and here I am however many years later, still doing it. The value in taking those leaps I believe to be completely and totally priceless. The doors that type of “education” opens for us, we can’t get any other way….. so I say do it…. whatever it is, and anyone that’s reading… do it.

  3. Mel, your courage really is inspiring. As skydivers we all just want to live the dream and you’re doing it. We know that anything in life worth doing is scary or uncertain. It has to be. I’ve switched colleges/majors more times than I’m proud to admit and now I’m a few months away from graduation and I’m in that terror mode you talked about. One the one hand, Im sure I can find a low paying crappy advertising job somewhere but on the other, I could wait until the right, non-crappy job comes up, if it ever does. The point there is that the rewards always reflect the risks we take. You took that risk and it seems like it’s been paying off. It’s human nature to be worried about the future but think back being a newbie jumper and the fear and nerves that come for the first dozens of jumps. I was always told to take slow deep breathes before exit and that it’d be worth it once I landed. It always was! I use that same technique when I start to panic about the future and a few deep breathes and reminding myself “I got this sh**” really does help! Despite the fact that we have yet to ever meet in person, your posts and videos are always a bright and insightful break in the day. If that’s not affirmation I don’t know what is!

    Keep being awesome and living the dream!

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