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What could you achieve if you were prepared to break some rules?

As I did my morning jog this morning, I went past a skate park. There were a few boys having a great time enjoying the park before it got too crowded.

Ben on skateboard

My son Ben in Feb 2007

I noticed that they were enjoying the freedom of no helmets, pads, or even long pants for that matter. I’m sure at some point they have been told that it is dangerous to skate without a helmet, and yet they do it without fear of failure.

Now as adults, we know that the chance of them hurting themselves is quite high. They may even do themselves irreparable damage. But, without the encumbrance of pads and helmets, they have greater flexibility, better vision, balance and freedom to create great tricks.

  • Are they wrong for not wearing these safety items, if it means they are able to achieve something new?
  • Is it possible that, without the encumbrance of rules made by others, you may be able to achieve something that hasn’t been done before?
  • It will probably be risky, just as these kids risk their bodies, but will the rewards be worth the risk?

I love this quote from Thomas Edison:

Hell, there are no rules here–we’re trying to accomplish something.

Which is another way of saying not only think outside the box, but be prepared to step out of your comfort zone and act on your new thinking.