When was the last time you took a leap or jumped into the unknown... or something unfamiliar? Mine was a few weeks ago while on vacation in Siargao. However, I didn’t jump out of choice, I had someone force me to do so as I stood at the edge of a ledge, frozen for a long time. I wasn’t terrified because it wasn’t too high. I was stuck because I don’t remember what it has been like to do this after a long time.
The first time I jumped off into water was in my early 20’s during a “swim stop,” while on a campaign onboard the Greenpeace Rainbow Warrior. Swim stops are when the captain decides to stop the ship and everyone jumps off for a swim. It was terrifying - thinking of sharks and all and I don’t think I could swim well but after a few minutes of hesitation, I found myself sinking and swimming towards a rope, water in my nostrils, and the feeling of freedom in my bones.
More then a decade later, on a cove’s jumping spot, I was unable to move. Someone had to push me off with my consent. Right before his push, I realized being unable to be spontaneous is scarier than jumping off into the unknown. I am grateful that moving to my hometown and starting a non profit have taught me so much rooting ... but I seem to have lost my wings.
Today I came across a letter I wrote to myself back in 2017. It was a time I was deciding whether to pursue a job application or dive into starting Green Releaf. I asked myself to think about what kind of leadership was calling me, telling myself "to listen to where you want to lead and where you want your dreams to lead you." I listed several wise recommendations to my future self and these were exactly what I needed today because I wouldn’t have done what I have done by now if I made a difference choice. It was actually meant to be read last year as indicated in the date for February 2020, but out of pure synchronicity I saw it today and it was what I needed to read at the perfect time.
Funny, come to think of it, this theme of my life work direction comes together with jumping into water. After being on the Rainbow Warrior learning about climate change for the first time inspired me to leave the museum, my first job, and pursue a path in environmental education. That was a big jump and I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing now if I didn’t take that leap. With this rite of passage into new horizons of my work, I am inspired to share that I'm about to enter a new phase in my life-work and this reminder of taking a leap motivates me to embark on it fully very soon.