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Jon Gordon’s New Year’s Ritual

At the beginning of each new year, I have a ritual that involves the ocean. And jumping. It’s a way to start fresh.

Jon Gordon has New Year ritual that gives sense of self-improvement

I have an unusual New Year’s Day ritual. On January first, I jump into the ocean—even here in north Florida, the water’s cold enough to jolt the senses. It’s a reminder for me to go for it, to live with trust not fear.

How did my ritual start? Several years ago everything seemed to be coming together. I had a good job with a dot.com company, and I was about to open a restaurant. My plan was to keep my job until the restaurant started making a profit. My wife and I put almost all our savings into the restaurant.

Then, a month before my restaurant was set to open, the dot.com downsized. I lost my job. How was I going to take care of my wife and two young children with no salary, barely any savings, and a new restaurant that at best would take months to turn a profit? I’d never been so scared in my life.

For the first time, Mr. I Can Do It All couldn’t do it all. And for the first time, I surrendered. Help me, God, I prayed. Provide for me and my family. I will do whatever you ask of me. I went out and marketed the restaurant 1,000 percent. But I couldn’t shake the fear that we might not get out of this mess.

So on New Year’s Day 2001, I took the plunge. Literally into the chilly Atlantic waters. Symbolically into living a life where my trust is much bigger than my fear.

We broke even the first week. The second, third and fourth. A consulting gig came out of the blue. My wife said, “Jon, don’t you see? We’re being carried.” Just as our savings trickled down to our last dime, the restaurant made its first profit. I finally understood: When you trust, great things happen.

C’mon, jump in with me. Here’s to a year of living fearlessly!

Download your free ebook Paths to Happiness: 7 Real Life Stories of Personal Growth, Self-Improvement and Positive Change.

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