Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Lower Your Risk for Risk Taking

Many of my clients could have saved themselves a lot of anguish if they had come to me sooner.  In fact, one of the most common phrases I hear after the first session is “Wow, I really should have done this a long time ago."  But, I know why it takes whatever it takes.

For instance, what holds you back from exploring new ideas, approaching your boss for a raise, changing careers, or transitioning into your own business? Fear of risking. Most of us allow the fear to completely overshadow the possibility of far greater happiness and success.

But, if .you do not risk, your life (and career and relationships) become stagnant. Are you bored? Discontent?  It’s a clear signal you aren’t risking enough.

Here are simple tips to lower your risk of risk taking:

1) Don’t take stupid risks.   This is a risk where the possibility of a positive outcome is limited.  Think lottery. Gambling. People who are terrified to invest a few hundred dollars to invest in personal career development will, however, spend $10-50 a week on the lottery where there is a million in one chance of a return on investment.  That adds up to $500-$2500 a year….money you could have spent on risks that would have produced a far more positive result.

2) Risk on positive the outcomes.  Always look at what you’re going to WIN, not LOSE, and stay focused on that.  Focusing on the fear only produces more fear.  For instance, asking for a raise or a different opportunity at work has within it great possible outcomes.  The worst thing that can happen is that they say no, but you may have planted a seed for the future, nonetheless. The positive far outweighs the negative consequences. Other examples are taking a new class where the worst case is you won’t learn anything (highly unlikely) or going to a networking event to meet new people (and you don’t meet anyone) ….but remember, you may meet that great contact that can offer a job or bring you business!

3) Risk in small steps. You don’t start running with a marathon. Risking is a practice.  You want to work about 1-2 inches outside of your comfort zone.  Staying in your comfort zone will keep you – and your life – boring and stuck. If you take too big a risk at one time, you can shut yourself off emotionally. Maybe the first steps to the marathon is running 30 minutes 3 or 4 times a week and then building up to a 5K which eventually leads you to a marathon.  Find others who want to run, and slowly you will be ready .to take the bigger risk.

4) Risk consistently and often.  Be accountable. Risk is a muscle. The more you take small risks and move them to bigger risks, the stronger your muscle and ability to take risks in all areas of your life.  In our mastermind teams, we take the 2 week approach – a minor upgrade and commitment every 2 weeks, and then you become accountable for that action in the next meeting to your support team. People have moved mountains, built businesses, tripled their income, and dealt with devastating life events through this process.

Find a place to be accountable regularly and you will discover you have significantly expanded your ability to risk – and it wasn’t even scary!

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