Taking the leap into something new can be scary because the downside is usually pretty clearly defined, whereas the upside tends to be vague and ambiguous. For Michael J. Fox that leap involved retiring from a hugely successful acting career and diving into the great unknown of life as a Parkinson’s patient and advocate.
“I had no idea what the future would hold for me once I stepped out of the comfort zone of my television career. I certainly didn’t envision myself creating a foundation that would have such an impact on not only my life, but the lives of countless people I will probably never meet. What led me to that choice may have been God or may have just been an emerging practical need to do something positive. The purpose that you wish to find in life, like a cure you seek, is not going to fall from the sky…It requires the faith to take risks and a rejection of the bonds of fear. I believe purpose is something for which one is responsible; it’s not just divinely assigned.”
As you think about following your dream, don’t forget to consider the upside. As Fox (and the other legends we’ve read about) shows us, that “thing” you desire to do has the potential to change the world.
Conversation starter: What are the upsides of your leap?
Read along! This month we’re reading Always Looking Up: The Adventures of an Incurable Optimist by Michael J. Fox.