(def.) New Sneakers feeling: the feeling that occurs directly after putting on a brand new pair of squeaky new sneaks.
As a child, it was the feeling of unwavering confidence that directly followed a trip home from the sporting goods store. I distinctly remember removing my new shoes from their box and tying the laces just like my parents taught me. Right there on the grass, I would jump and prance on the lawn before taking off down the gravel driveway and fly fly flying on shoes made for Hermes. I was the faster girl in the world and nothing could slow me down.
After high school, the New Sneakers feeling was more contained. Instead of running circles around my dad’s legs, I would lace up and take an extra long run or get on a treadmill with seemingly untapped reserves of strength. But the feeling was short-lived. I knew better by now. Shoes weren’t magic; they were just shoes. And I was the same old me.
And then, the New Sneakers feeling began manifesting itself in different ways. I recognized it as the feeling that accompanied a big change or start of something new: the day before my trip to Europe, my college graduation, my 25th birthday party. At each of those moments, I once again felt like I’d laced up a new pair of cleats before the championship game. The world was my oyster and nothing could slow me down.
Once again, I have the New Sneakers feeling. As of Friday, I’ll be leaving my current company for a new opportunity. And once again, I’m taking a risk and reveling in my newfound freedom.
We spend so much time worrying about the future. We learn to fear change because of the unknowns that lie ahead. What’s the best move? What if we fail? What if we let someone down or have regrets? I understand those fears. These fears keep us from making impulsive decisions and help us validate our current path. But these fears also keep us from the New Sneakers feeling we so desperately need to feel alive.
Do you remember the feeling of your feet in new sneakers for the first time? There was no question of where to go, how fast or for how long. There was no fear of failure or defeat.
You already had the potential to fly.