An unexpected lesson from the world’s most dangerous sport.

Red rock roads and satin sunsets. Crimson cacti and eclectic, desert diners.

Moab, Utah is a splendid sight for sore eyes.

This trip to Moab held a completely new experience in store for me. I was attending a festival for BASE jumpers to film my friends jump off really high mountains.

BASE jumping stands for Buildings, Antennas, Space, and Earth, and is a sport where people jump from high places and deploy a parachute from their backpack.

Fear, to this extent, was extremely foreign to me. I had never known anyone who had done this before, so naturally I had a lot of questions.

I asked my friends if their perspective on life changed since they started BASE jumping. They shared some interesting things…

Some say they have a moment of clarity before they jump, coming to terms with what really matters in life.

Some say they don’t stress about the small things because there are much bigger things to worry about in life.

Unanimously, they shared that they learned to make the most of every day, because you never know when it really could be your last. Cherish every day. Never take anything for granted. And most importantly, be a kind human with your time on Earth.

I don’t plan to BASE jump anytime soon (you’re welcome Dad), but I did learn some important lessons. Fear is funny in that way. If you actually imagine yourself losing something, it makes you that much more grateful for it when you don’t.

What events have helped you gain perspective on life? How do you practice gratitude?

As always, I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts on this topic. And if you want to read more of my stuff, you can check me out here.


14 thoughts on “An unexpected lesson from the world’s most dangerous sport.

  1. Great post – I am often amazed at the danger we often put ourselves in through extreme sports. But I guess, there is something about the state of mind that these activities put you in that is worth the risk.

    Death and unexpected loss, often remind me of the fragility of life. They encourage me to not take life for granted. From this perspective, every moment is an opportunity to express gratitude for our time on this planet.

    1. I agree, I think the lessons we learn after dangerous situations remind us of the fragility of life. Nothing is guaranteed and to make the most out of every day. It’s almost like putting the philosophy of “memento mori” into practice. Nothing is promised. Thank you for sharing and best wishes for your start of 2022 🙂

  2. Not for everyone E.L, but it’s that “This could be it!” adrenaline rush life perspective experienced climbing mountain cathedrals and on my bucket list sky-dive that make me grateful this wasn’t my last day to live . . . thankful yesterday wasn’t . . . with an inexplicable peace knowing if this is the end, His forever awaits.

    1. Oh yes, sometimes when I’m climbing outside and have to trust the gear I’m using to actually do it’s job those “this could be it” feelings never fail to get me even though I’ve been climbing for 2 years. It brings me a newfound gratitude that I didn’t have before I left the ground. I cherish these moments. Best wishes for you in 2022 🙂

  3. I’m with you, E.L.. I’m not doing that anytime soon (or ever). But I think you’ve done a beautiful job of capturing the experience for those that do.

    I suppose defining moments are always incredibly useful for helping us simplify and prioritize our lives. May we all get that clarity whether we BASE jump or not!

    Best wishes to you for a fantastic 2022!

    1. Wynee, I agree base jumping isn’t for me, but I think it’s important for us all to conquer fears, big or small, and the philosophy of “Memento mori,” remembering that life isn’t guaranteed. It was a particularly impactful weekend for me because lately I had been stressing about “small” things in life. Things that I will be able to look back on and realize why they had to happen to shape my future self. Stepping up my positive thinking for 2022, and hoping the same for you! Best of wishes to you <3E

  4. EL, thank you for an interesting and enlightening post. I don’t think BASE would be a life-changing experience for me, but losing those I love has been. I held my husband’s hand as he died nearly twenty years ago, and it has left a profound impression. I remember my grandparents and parents and many friends who have died and reflect on life’s meaning and transitory nature.

    I once contemplated hang gliding many years ago, and I have been known to do a few slightly risky things. I chose early on not to live in fear.

    Wishing you a beautiful 2022! <3

    1. Cheryl, I can’t even imagine going through that, but those experiences have made you into the person you are today. You can only do your best each day, choose to see the good in a situation, and like you said, choose not to live in fear. Base jumping isn’t for me either, but I do find some similarities with conquering my fear in rock climbing. Thanks for sharing and wishing you a 2022 full of love and light! <3E

  5. I believe you are right, that these extreme moments bring clarity. And I wonder: does this clarity last for most of us beyond the experience? When we are ill, we appreciate health, but when we are back in good health, most of us tend to forget how much we valued our health, and tend to go back to our less than optimal habits that hurt our health?

    1. That’s a great point. I think the reason we keep going back to those extreme moments is that the clarity does indeed fade. I think it’s human nature to not avoid reality unless it’s staring us in the face. To your example, we revert to doing the habits that made us ill after we have gained our strength back and “forgotten” it. It’s something to keep in mind to lead a more balanced life, which is what I’m striving for this year! Best wishes to you and thanks for your comment. <3E

  6. That’s a great point. I think the reason we keep going back to those extreme moments is that the clarity does indeed fade. I think it’s human nature to not avoid reality unless it’s staring us in the face. To your example, we revert to doing the habits that made us ill after we have gained our strength back and “forgotten” it. It’s something to keep in mind to lead a more balanced life, which is what I’m striving for this year! Best wishes to you and thanks for your comment. <3E

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