I would rather regret the things that I have done than the things that I have not.– Lucille Ball
When you think of risk, what comes to mind?
Do you see risk as something hazardous, intense foolish, or do you think of risk taking as exhilarating, breathtaking and stimulating?
Risk can be all those things and more. It’s finding the best possible solution when facing uncertainty and making the best decision you can make under the circumstances.
It took courage to enter a new relationship, learn to ride a bike, start a business or move to a new city. Yet, despite setbacks, you achieved these and more and you survived them, didn’t you?
It takes courage and commitment to take risks. When you avoid experiencing the possibilities that can bring excitement, joy and extreme pleasure to your life, you’re just playing it safe. You feel like “there must be something more“, stuck in a rut, frustrated and ultimately regretful. You are reluctant to take risks because you fear taking the necessary steps to move forward with an eye on the possibilities rather than limitations.
Risk taking can thrust you into action when you follow these suggestions:
- Start small – Maybe you want to speak in front of a group. Start by creating a speech or presentation in front of several friends who will give you honest feedback and encouragement.
- Plan – Put those lingering thoughts about moving forward into a clear action plan. List out in detail all the steps you need to take to move forward.
- Assess – Weigh the level of risk involved and take a hard look at all of the possible outcomes. You may be surprised to find that the positive outcomes outweigh the limitations.
- Reduce fear – Fear will keep you stuck and regretful. On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being the most), rate how high on the scale you place your level of fear. Look at the emotional response and if the feelings are intense, find ways to reduce the intensity until you feel comfortable.
- Keep a positive, confident attitude. Your attitude determines your altitude. When you feel positive and confident, it’s easier to take steps that get you to where you want to go.
Notice the first letter of each of the above suggestions is an acronym for SPARK . I like to think of taking a risk as igniting a roaring fire under fear, doubt, regret and procrastination beginning with the first spark of fire (step).
What step are you willing to take today to move from your safety net to inspired, courageous action?
Certified Life Coach, Family therapist and Group Coaching Specialist, Gladys M. Anderson, helps nurses, teachers, social workers, therapists and other care-giving women to set limits so they have more time, more joy and more energy for self-care. To get tips, start living out loud with more enthusiasm, energy, passion, and self-confidence now, get your FREE copy of Building Strong Boundaries to Create More Breathing Space in Your Hectic Life