I’ve been writing about learning that takes place in nonstressful situations. But what about when the chips are down? When life is on the line? When what you stand for is challenged? The learning we do about who we truly are when under fire is one of the most revealing insights into our character. And what we can do to prepare for those situations is what this is about.
I was in a canoe with two other adults and we swamped in some pretty fast moving water as we hit up against a downed tree. I pulled myself out of the water with a lot of effort onto the downed tree, then went to help the others. I saw my coleader turning white and barely hanging on, and knew I had to give him the grip of life, while not losing mine. Using my lifesaving training, I braced myself on the log and gave him my hand with as firm a grip as I could. I needed help (which I got) to pull him to safety, but hopefully provided the assurance to him that I would not let go. I hope you have not been in a physical lifesaving situation, but a) how have you prepared for emergencies? and b) what do you do to help others and give them a metaphorical hand that won’t drop them?
It’s that reassurance and connection that I think many of us need to feel the confidence we need to go on.
Especially in these tough times, I encourage you to find your own way to reach out to others, to help them, to be “a safety net” for them so they can do what they need. And let me know what happens. Because a helping hand is almost always welcomed.