My karate sensei used to always say, “whatever doesn’t kill you, only makes you stronger.” He would usually say this before mercilessly beating me in one on one competition. Either way the adage stuck. My ontology is that we are the sum of our experiences, good or bad—everything is an opportunity to learn. Some of the greatest leaders, actors, musicians, and writers in modern history have served to profoundly change the world after facing challenging adversities . . . hopefully you can too (oh yeah, and me).
To laugh is to risk appearing the fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach out to others is to risk involvement.
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self.
To place your ideas, your dreams before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying.
To hope is to risk despair.
To try is to risk failure.
But risks must be taken,
because the greatest hazard in life is to do nothing.
The person who risks nothing,
does nothing, has nothing, and is nothing.
They may avoid suffering and sorrow,
but they cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love, live.
Chained by their attitudes, they are a slave,
they forfeited their freedom.
Only the person who risks can be free