How Skydiving Changed My Life needs to be a memoir written by every skydiver, everywhere. Go ahead and ask anyone who has jumped, “Did skydiving change your life?” And they will quickly answer with a resounding “YES!” They may not even know why, but they will be able to differentiate how they felt before making a skydive and after taking the leap.
“Why did skydiving change my life?” is a more in-depth question that skydivers are always pondering, and the answer is different for everyone! This originality is just one of the reasons that skydiving is so incredibly special. Let’s dive into the question, “What does skydiving do for you mentally,” and how it carries over into all aspects of life.
Absolutely, skydiving has positive long-term effects. Take a minute to think about it … have you ever been in a fully functioning airplane with the door wide open? Have you ever worn a harness and attached your body to a perfect stranger and told them, “Yes, I am ready to jump out of this airplane with you.” Probably not!
Skydiving is a completely new experience for multiple reasons, and our brains have a difficult time grasping and processing all the quick changes. Not only are you putting your faith in the expertise and goodwill of someone you’ve never met, but you’re fully trusting yourself to make the decision! In life, we’re often able to have second chances or to change our minds in order to get out of a situation. Skydiving is a little different; once you say yes, you’re fully committed.
Overcoming fear is the most obvious result of completing a skydive. We don’t care how macho you are, everyone gets a little jittery about going skydiving – it’s actually unnatural not to! The morbidly funny thing about fear is that it is impossible to reason with it. We can reassure ourselves about how irrational our fear is and even have other people console us about how silly we’re being, but it doesn’t change the feeling of having a nervous knot in your stomach. We’re not psychologists, but we’ve found that fear can only be rid of by showing who’s in control – by proving to your brain that there is no real reason to be afraid. What better way to face your fear than soaring through the skies at 120mph?
Something only needs to happen one time to instill fear in us, but it needs to be untaught multiple times for our brains to finally get it. Doing a tandem jump is the first step to shoving fear out of the picture, on the ground, and in the sky. Skydivers are typically super duper nervous for their first 5, 10, or 50 jumps and usually settle down to a normal nervous level at some point – everyone goes at a different pace!
When we put ourselves out there and consciously overcome our fears we gain confidence. Whether the fear is interacting with strangers (come on, don’t act as if you’ve never had social anxiety), trusting yourself with a big decision, heights, or actually jumping out of a plane, skydiving fantastically touches all the bases. So, does skydiving make you braver? We’d say so! The smile that will inevitably spread across your face upon landing from your skydive – and captured by your videographer – is a testament to your newfound confidence in the feat you’ve just conquered.
Leaving the dropzone with a new lease on life is the most common result of skydiving. “Skydiving changed my life because it encouraged me to live every single day to the fullest,” is a common theme from both first-timers and veteran skydivers. Take any situation you’re a bit freaked out about … let’s say, asking your boss for a raise (eek!). Once you get the meeting over with (maybe it was a brutal 10 minutes of pure awkwardness), you feel better. And that newfound confidence will carry over into other interactions in the future, such as the next time you have to ask for something. When we overcome fears in the sport of skydiving, no matter how small, it tends to have a big ripple effect afterward.
The skydiving community is peppered across the entire globe. Skydivers come from various backgrounds and possess a multitude of different beliefs, but we are all connected through our admiration and respect for the sport. We all value constant learning and growth, helping others in their jumping journey, and supporting one another long after the sun has set. This inherent set of values is what holds the glue together – it’s what turns friends into a family at every dropzone.
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