In last week's article, The value of money, I had touched on the idea that people generally over-estimate the risk of doing something and under-estimate the impact of taking no action. Ultimately, causing us to stand still.
So why do we stand still? Let's look at a common example that will likely resonate with everyone that has kids:
Now that we have 3 children, bless their souls!, we often (very often) experience this. The kids are playing, not doing anything out of the ordinary. The volume starts to go up, then some form of uncontrolled chaos starts to show itself, and we, as parents, see the potential of something bad happening, so we put our foot down and stop the craziness.
So what happened there? Ultimately, they were first quietly playing (standing still), someone got an idea that it would be interesting to do something (taking a risk), they all joined in because it looked exciting (if they're doing it then maybe we should too), in our experience we'd seen someone get hurt when a situation resembled what was happening (broken arm, hurt feelings, etc), so we stopped it out of fear before anything bad could happen.
From a very young age, we become very risk-averse. Don't stand on the chair, don't run too fast, don't go on the ice, don't be rude, don't don't don't, because if you do, something bad could happen, at least in our experience as a parent, or even better, the experience of other parents. This gets instilled in us and we start to control risk in our lives, because it is then more predictable, repeatable, it's safer, and ultimately, it's better. Or so we think.
So when we are unwilling to take risk, we ultimately stop much of the potential of achieving something new, the potential for growth. Many of us always wish for things to be different, we dream of the things that could be. But ultimately, because of the perceived risk, we don't take enough action to make those dreams a reality.
We all have varying degrees of risk tolerance. I'm not suggesting that a certain level of risk is required or should be taken to achieve your goals or dreams, however, if we were to just take a tiny bit more risk, even the smallest amount of risk more than we do today, we will generate new experiences and tap into the possibility that's out there for us.
What small risk can you take to step closer toward the life you want to live? Not sure where to start? Lucky for you, I know a pretty awesome life coach that can help!