Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Running into the Sea

This picture means a lot to me. It’s my son Rae having fun on a day out. It was taken on an out-of-season trip to the seaside here in the UK, which means wind, cold, and closed attractions. Why would we do this? Well, there’s a certain kitch-ness to seeing off-season resort towns, a timeless charm. With almost no people around we got to focus on each other, and we all seemed to get this feeling of being the only people left on the planet. Which is cool.

The reason I love this picture so much is it represents a moment of madness I really want clients, friends and fellow creative to take note of.

It was freezing cold.  It was windy. We were not staying at any hotel, and we had no beach items (towels, spare clothes etc etc.).  At this point my 7 year old (as if trying to demonstrate his own craziness and bravery) simply ran into the sea. Up to his waist.  After the initial shock of the cold, and seeing our reaction, he knew he’d done something out of the ordinary.  He loved the fact that this was the LAST thing he should have done. And that it somehow now set him apart from the rest of the family as the “crazy” one. He grinned as passers-by stopped to comment, and he laughed as panic passed and we all saw the funny side.

Moreover, he experienced a visceral moment of cold, excitement, and joy.  I am pretty sure he’ll remember that moment for the rest of his life.  And that’s what happens when you take a chance. When you do that thing nobody expected you to do. 

That moment reinforced two things I knew to be true:

1.            The downside of taking such a chance is almost NEVER as bad as you think it will be (Rae spend the day squelching around the town like this was some huge badge of honour).

2.            The benefits are always memorable to everyone involved, especially if you live a life of quiet desperation, as most people do (It reinforced our family belief that Rae will change the world one day).

We spend so much of our lives on the dull stuff. Filling in forms, commuting, being in meetings.

Isn’t it high time YOU ran into the sea?

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