Be brave and step into the unknown

May 7, 2024By Destiny GillbeeInsights

While Forrest Gump believed that life was like a box of chocolates, I disagree. Although a box of chocolates offers an element of surprise, it still always carries a sweet moment of pleasure, and life certainly does not always hold the promise of indulgent delight at every turn. Rather I think life bears more similarity to books.

The element of surprise

When you pick up a book and start to read it you don’t know what to expect. You approach it with various emotions that might include hope, excitement, and expectancy, but might also in some cases include  more reluctance or dread. Whether books live up to these expectations or disappoint, they initially arouse curiosity, spark interest, and leave the reader wanting to know more. They entice us to move forward, discover, learn and feed the imagination by immersing ourselves into the world of words that transports us to another place until we’ve read the very last word. And in the end, books change our perspectives, teach us and guide us along various paths, and we are left better for the experience.

Similarly, life is filled with opportunity and holds the promise of uncertainty. We also approach it with a range of pre-conceived expectations and a whirlwind of emotion. Optimism, enthusiasm and even a sense of adventure are accompanied by our own hopes, fears, trepidation, and excitement. And while books allow us to skip forward to confirm (in some cases) that all will end well, life reveals no details or ending, instead setting forth a path for us to discover, alone with our thoughts. As we take an initial leap of faith filled with hope, often doubt and uncertainty also appear, yet we have to be brave, strong and believe in ourselves enough to acknowledge the fear but not let it prevent us from moving forwards and stepping into the unknown.

A new path awaits

It is the hope of discovering something new, different and maybe even better, that drives us to push ourselves into complete newness. Not necessarily new to everyone, but new to the individual. A place where some before you might have failed, and others managed to succeed. It is a path of self-discovery where we move out of our comfort zone to a place that makes us look at the world and ourselves differently.

20 years ago, Paula Elliott, MD at C8 Consulting, decided to challenge boundaries, try something new and be brave. As a Director in a well-known London-based B2B PR agency and a new mother to a six-month-old baby, she decided to launch her own agency. Driven by her strong drive to make a difference, Paula’s bravery has been rewarded with a solid list of disruptive-tech clients that have benefited from her knowledge and expertise, and her innate ability to trust and follow her gut instinct. At the same time, several employees have had the opportunity to join her on this journey, learning and developing skills that have helped them pave a path for a career in PR. I am one of these employees who stepped into the unknown and, filled with hope, packed up my family from South Africa to the UK for the opportunity to change my life experiences, to pursue a career with a leading UK-based PR agency and work with an inspirational leader, plus a brilliant team.

Make a change

While books may guide us along life’s journey, often we need more. We need to be intuitive and follow our gut instinct to make a change. I like this acronym too – F.E.A.R – False Evidence Appearing Real – this is the trick our mind plays on us when it introduces self-doubt on the basis of ‘evidence’ that simply isn’t true about ourselves. When this phenomenon strikes, we need to challenge our own mindset gently but firmly. We need to steel ourselves to go beyond the norms of what’s possible and we should not fear failure, as it is an essential part of the learning process. Most importantly, we must be brave and believe that we can do anything we set our minds to achieve.

At C8, we’re always on the look-out for curious, talented people to join our team. So, if you’re ready to be brave and start a new chapter in your book, and have a passion for PR and disruptive-tech, do get in touch, we’d love to hear from you.