There is a myth that ancient maps included the phrase “There be dragons” in the far reaches and uncharted territories. While it makes for a compelling story, it’s simply not true. Maps did not include dragons (at least maps that have been uncovered so far).
But be sure there are dragons in the unknown.
They are not scaly fire-breathers, but they can inspire fear in us, and effectively torch and leave us for dead if we are not mindful of them. These dragons come with a number of names such as fear, doubt, negativity, and uncertainty. Mind monsters must be silenced or else they will handcuff us to the shore and keep us from experiencing life to the full. There is so much more for us to do and become!
Just the other day I was with my daughter on the fourth floor of a building. She was paralyzed when she got anywhere near a stairwell or window where she could see down. I know that feeling all too well. I was also gripped by an unhealthy fear of heights until I was in my mid to late twenties.
Finally I had enough.
I chopped the head off the dragon.
First I walked on the clear glass floor on the CN Tower at 1122 feet above the ground. Then I bungee jumped off a bridge 140 feet above a river. Finally I skydived at 10,000 ft. Believe me, none of this was easy (as my friends who were there with me can testify to!). But it was worth every drop of sweat, anxious thought and sickness in my stomach.
Now I am no longer rendered useless around heights. I can enjoy the view from a skyscraper or walk over a suspension bridge. Sure I don’t have plans to tightrope across the Niagara Falls anytime soon, but I also don’t freak out when I need to clean the leaves out of my gutters at home.
This is just one example of many internal struggles I have had to have to keep forward momentum in my life and leadership.
What is a dragon you must slay today or forever be held back on the fringes of what is known?
What thought, voice or fear has you anchored to the known instead of sailing into an exciting uncertain in your marriage, family, workplace or community?
Don’t wait any longer. Take action today. There is much territory to explore. It is a big world with even bigger possibilities.
There be dragons. Yes, there be. But if you refuse to feed them they will die like your fear, doubt, negativity and uncertainty.