Tag Archives: taking a risk

you can overcome it …

“Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions.  All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make the better.  What if they are a little course, and you may get your coat soiled or torn?  What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice.  Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.”  Ralph Waldo Emerson

Are you a risk taker?

What was it like the first time you did something?   Were you excited or afraid?    What did you think would happen?

For some people it is the first time standing on the edge of a diving board.   It is that uneasy feeling of the board moving up and down and perhaps it is the fear of the unknown, not knowing what will happen that petrifies many people before they take that first leap.     Push the board down and it propels you upward and then it retreats while your feet lose contact with the board surface and by propelling yourself forward you clear the end of the board.    With arms and legs flailing about and the body in free fall towards the water the next challenge is getting into the water without hitting the water broadside.    Kersplash …  the next part is getting back above the surface of the water and in a few seconds your head breaks through and with one big gulp of air you realize you made it and a sense of relief passes through the body.

Getting to the end of the diving board for the first time and making the decision to leap, jump or dive was an experience that only happens once.  Once the event is over it is either safe to do it again or not.   For most people the experience is worth repeating again and again.    After a few tires then experimenting and doing new launches off the board seems OK, fear now become excitement.

It was a risk to make that first jump at least it felt risky.  How did you get there?

1. You made a decision (ok, I am ready, I am going to do it)
2. You anticipated the event  (increased heart rate)
3. You took action (overcame the internal resistance)
4. You observed the results (it was better than you thought)
5. Your confidence increased (it was safe, go do it again)

If you go back to that very first time, you may have watched a friend go jump off of the diving board and as they were “in the air” they yelled “come try it, it’s fun!”) and as you watched you were thinking “maybe it is or I’m not so sure it will work for me” and it may have been a moment where all you could respond with “No, it doesn’t look like fun and I have to go”.   A quick risk reduction step,  an excuse to do something else, so that you wouldn’t have to take that first step.

You left the swimming pool and walked away, not taking that change, or risk to leap off the diving board into the cool water.  You missed having the fun of flying into the air and landing with a splash of laughter and joy, thinking next time I’ll try, next time I’ll jump into the air and experience what looks like to be so much fun, only if it weren’t so scary.

Not long ago I was talking with someone who wanted to make a change but was afraid of taking that step.   Fear gripped his words, ”  I’d like to but  (notice the but) I’m not sure it will work”, and so in a moment of indecision backed off, and  retreated to a place that felt  safer.   It was like walking away from the pool knowing that everyone else was having fun but that first jump, that first dive, just looked like it was too risky to take, maybe next time.

What are you waiting for, next time?

What is your risk taking score?

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”  Anaïs Nin

too many choices …


Your decisions to do things are based on emotions.   Oh, not you, you’re the logical one who makes decisions by doing a very factual analysis and what the data tells you is what the outcome will be.   When you were developing that factual analysis where did the values you were going to score come from?    Perhaps it was the things you care about most.  The values that you have and the experiences are the motivational forces that drive your “thoughts” and “emotions”.     Beliefs and values are largely emotional when acted upon. 

So, if you’re the analytical type what you value is “getting it right”, not about “feeling right”, but getting the right answer so that you can feel good about the answer.   Apart from you all the analysis in the world won’t change anything about the reason for or against any decision.    It is better to buy gold or diamonds?   You can have a analysis done that shows that diamonds matter more to some buyers than others, so what is right?  What is right for you?   The decision goes back to an emotional need how you arrive at the conclusion whether analytical or emotional is part of the justification to “feel good” about the decision.  

Not making a decision is a decision as well.   Taking action is one choice and not doing something is a choice.   There isn’t a right or wrong about the choice it is just a choice.   There is a right and wrong choice for you and your desires and goals.   Let’s take buying a car.   Buying a car for some is easy, the car matches the color the person really loves, and the deal is done.   For others there is a whole sequence of steps that have to be taken to arrive at the right car for the right reason, safety, gas mileage, reliability, resale, performance, options, model, … and the list goes on and oh, the price had better be right or no deal.     There is no right or wrong about buying a car, it just has to meet your emotional desires.    The car doesn’t care who the owner is, the purchaser is the only one who cares.

Many, many people pour over a decision and worry and fret about making the “right” decision, the “right” choice, what makes it the “right” choice?   The choice of career, the choice of a partner, a choice of home purchase, a choice of medical care, a choice of moving, a choice of colors, a choice of texture, a choice of being self-employed or being employed by others,  a choice for personal development, a choice of spiritual matters, and more choices.    Some of the choices that are made don’t work and some work well and at the moment the choice was made it was your best choice.   It was the best at that very moment because it “felt” right and because of the information you had or the strong emotions you had it seemed like the best possible choice.    Turning the clock back, the decision that was made may not have seemed like the best choice, it may feel like the worst choice that was ever made.  Only if there was more time and more information to make a more informed choice.     People who long for more time and more information often have trouble making a choice.  Taking a risk feels too uncomfortable.

What choices would you like to make over again?    How would they serve you if you did get a chance to do it over?

What choices will put you in a better position to face tomorrow?   Will today’s choice bring about a better tomorrow?

 “When making a decision of minor importance, I have always found it advantageous to consider all the pros and cons. In vital matters, however, such as the choice of a mate or a profession, the decision should come from the unconscious, from somewhere within ourselves. In the important decisions of personal life, we should be governed, I think, by the deep inner needs of our nature.”

Sigmund Freud