You look up, the sun shines incessantly, your vision blurs, your face burns, your skin stings, your body feels dehydrated, your knees and spine bend, your hands rest on your leg and you begin to catch your breath.
Suddenly, you realize that you are following a path that no longer makes sense with the way you think today, who you are, your dreams, and your desires. There aren't enough flowers, plants, and trees decorating the sides of the road to make you feel good, the obstacles don't make any sense, your body feels exhausted, the ground hurts your feet, and the people who were supposed to be with you moved on without you because it didn't make sense for them to help or wait for you.
So you wonder. “Where exactly is this path leading me? When did I start following it? What is at the end anyway? Wasn't this supposed to be an adventure?”
Coming up behind you, a wise and old Shifu appears, walking with all the tranquility in the world, holding a staff in one hand, a scroll between his arm, carrying a full waterskin, and wearing a refreshing flannel outfit and a yellow cape that can be seen from far away, covering only one of his arms and shoulders,
— Greetings, my child, would you like some water?
— Please, sir. You just saved my life. Thank you very much.
— What is your birth name?
— Valor, it is. How about yours?
— People call me Shifu but my mother used to call me Little Buddha.
— I'm glad we've crossed paths, Shifu.
— You look exhausted, hang in there. I'm sure you're getting close to your destination.
— I don't know about that, I think I have been lost for a while.
— After all this progress and effort? What makes you want to give up?
— This path doesn't make sense to me anymore, I feel sick, weak, and alone. I don't even remember what or who is waiting for me at the end. This adventure was a lost cause ever since the beginning.
— Interesting, but is it about giving up or starting over?
— I just need a map, I need to understand where I am. Can you help me?
— What a beautiful coincidence, I have one right here. But is that really what you need, my child?
— The problem is that I don't see any signs around, and without a map, I might get lost again.
— Listen to the wise heart of these old words, my son. Said the Shifu as he kneeled down to meet the height of Valor, who was resting on the ground. — I understand that you don't want to take a risk with this decision, but maybe that's what it's about. Is it really a map you are waiting for, or do you lack the courage to explore the unknown, Valor?
Valor started looking at the ground, feeling like he had lost all words of his vocabulary while the Shifu continued.
— It's only after the risk has been taken that the new path will begin to make sense to you, the universe can’t help you if you don’t tell it what you want. If you are so stuck on an old path, you will never be able to start a new journey, the art of detachment is subtle and light, but it can only be cultivated in the bravery that dwells in the strongest of hearts.
— I don't know about that sir, it would be irresponsible to start trailing a new path without a map.
— Understand, my child, that there is a path set in stone for each of us. I ask you one last question: Do you really need this map if you can deeply understand in your thoughts that the guidance of your heart awaits you? It's all about trusting yourself, and in this brief conversation, my young one, I feel that you are destined for greatness.
— I think I understand now, sir. Thank you for this conversation, it's exactly what I needed.
— Take the water, you'll need it. Amituofo.
First, find courage. Wait no more. Believe it or not, among many other things, this is mostly a tale about comfort zone, sometimes we tend to avoid changes we want and need to make because we lack a map of what could happen if things go wrong. But it is precisely the courage from within that can help you with any necessary leap of faith. It is just and will always be just a matter of trusting yourself by knowing that there is a reason for the choices your heart wants to take, and there is knowledge and resilience to help you guide you through any and all adverse circumstances you might encounter.
Second, learn from the past. Don't use it as an excuse. Our past is our history but sometimes we tend to wear it as armor rather than turning it into a lesson and detaching from it so that we can keep journeying lightweight.
Third, there is no map. We can always make many different calculations but the reality is that there really isn't a map that can show us the results of our decisions. So, if a change is really needed, the mystery nevertheless, should be flavored and the thrill accepted with agency!
Fourth, you have all you need. The Shifu, Valor, and the waterskin are the elements of this story. One can be your inner voice, the other, yourself, and the water, your strength.
Voice-over Artist / Sound Engineering: Amanda de Andrade
Amanda has designed and recorded voice-overs for the top brands and most profitable companies in the world (over 720+ projects), some of them, being Amazon and Microsoft. She approaches voice performance artistically as well as scientifically while providing tactics, and novel vocal sound design for growth.
Scriptwriting: Thiago Patriota
Thiago is a seasoned marketing executive and published fiction author who found in the written expression his weapon to fight for a better future with more stories and heroes. He is responsible for turning executive visions into reality by helping pinpoint the design & storytelling behind projects and developing marketing strategies that encompass the digital, bidirectional, and metareality scenario we live in.