What we confuse with feeling risky and uncomfortable is often times vulnerability. If only we could fully grasp this, I know we'd all take more risks in a good way with our lives. Perhaps we just need to be reminded of what it feels like.
You know when you asked a girl or boy out for the first time or for the twentieth time? You remember what that feeling was? It was sickening and exciting all the same time. There is so much risk in the act of putting yourself out there. Your ego begins all of its regular questioning and annoyance, "What if he / she says no, laughs, walks away, slaps me, gives me a dirty look?" You know all the lines your ego gives you to back down to play it safe. Safety is primal. I get it. You want to run. Climb under the blankets. Hide behind a tree (I’ve done that!).
But then think of that big you. The one full of life and heart. The part of you that breaks away from ego and safety. That self that is always filled with curiosity and love and life. The self that wants you to go for it. Confident you. That part of you that thinks of all of the amazing possibilities: "What if he / she says yes? I'm so excited! This is going to be awesome! I can't wait for our first kiss." That is the you screaming for life and experience. It’s fantastic to be in that zone. Then you also feel the fear. The combination of fear and excitement creates a feeling of being vulnerable. That’s what being vulnerable means. That’s all. Being vulnerable is not bad. It's just right outside of your comfort zone (or really far out of your comfort zone)—a place where many of us are unwilling to go. We are so trained to only see outcome, the destination and we get stuck somewhere between the desire and the end product. There's much to do in between and much to process, but being vulnerable is the biggest step in between all of that. We have to allow ourselves to be uncomfortable enough to begin the process of change. Allowing yourself to be vulnerable is definitely letting go of being in control.
I remember the first time I told a boy I liked him in junior high. It was typical junior high school behavior, but out of all of my friends, I was the one who always told a boy how I felt—I never succumbed to the traditional line of thinking that I had to wait for a boy to ask me out. I did it always (I still do.). I wrote one of those notes that had the question and boxes: "Do you like me? Yes or no." It's laughable now, but I remember slipping it in his locker and having that feeling of being really excited and sick to my stomach all at the same time. I was vulnerable and it was freaking glorious! He did like me, and we never kissed and probably lasted about two weeks, which as we all know, is an eternity in junior high.
This risk taking applies to everything. There are so many reasons to not do something, but there are even more reasons to just go for it. Allow the space for vulnerability. Your life will change. I know it.