Stephen F. Dennstedt
It is not stepping back, or retreating, it’s simply changing your direction in a positive way. This message rings so true for me, and it resonates in a very personal and powerful way. Like so many of life’s aphorisms it points the way clearly, but only if you’re open to the message. That we so often have to step to the brink of the abyss before we turn around is a shame, but appears to be part of the human condition.
“IN RESPONSE TO PEOPLE WHO SAY, WELL YOU CAN’T GO BACK – WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU GET TO THE CLIFF AND YOU TAKE ONE STEP FORWARD, OR YOU DO A 180 DEGREE TURN AND TAKE ONE STEP FORWARD? WHICH WAY ARE YOU GOING? WHICH IS PROGRESS?”
– Doug Tompkins, founder of The North Face
I would strongly recommend watching the documentary 180° South. It is available through Netflix and I believe PBS. I have watched it before, and I will watch it again. It is a new (or very old) way of looking at things, and of solving problems big and small. It teaches us that there is a way to resolve our twenty-first century dilemmas, and that what may first seem to be a “stepping back” or “retreat” is actually, in point of fact, progress in its truest sense. Whether we apply this philosophy to humanity as a whole, or limit it to us as individuals, it is equally valid. When you think you’ve reached a dead end, that there is no more progress to be made, simply turning around 180° degrees and taking a step forward is the most logical path.