Recently someone told me that the scariest part of bungee jumping wasn’t taking the first step off the bridge. It wasn’t even at the nadir of their fall when they were closest to the river below. Instead, it was when they began bouncing back up.
The reason? This was the only point when they didn’t feel the safety and support of the harness and it was terrifying.
It reminded me that generally speaking most of us are very supportive of one another as we’re about to take a risk and make a leap in life. We are also good when our friends and families hit their lowest point. In both cases, we are quick to meet them where they are, offering words of encouragement, an ear to bend or support in any way we can.
What is not quite as instinctual is to support people as they are bouncing back, moving on or rising up. Maybe it’s the month after someone has taken the risk of tackling a new job, or moving to a new city and they’re questioning whether they made the right choice. Perhaps it’s three months after someone has lost a loved one and they are now just grappling with the everyday emptiness and reminders that surround them.
It is in these times when we feel alone or most unsupported. And it is precisely then when we run the risk of falling back instead of continuing our rise up.
This week reach out to a friend or family member who recently took a risk or experienced a loss. Don’t assume they are doing okay or great. Call and make sure.