I will admit it, taking risks can be scary and stressful. And it’s okay, really. We have all faced these moments in our lives where uncertainty played a major role; a career switch, moving to a different country, starting a degree, quitting a job or finally incubating that tech startup that you’ve been planning in your mind for years.
In our lives, we often need to go a little bit crazy and jump out of our comfort zones to be able to reach new goals, open up our talents and our minds to new ideas, skills, adventures and opportunities. It’s not an easy task and it requires vast amounts of courage. But that is what life is about. Taking risks.
“The biggest risk is not taking any risk. In a world that is changing really quickly, the only that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”
That’s the reason I always follow three personal “rules of life” that I run through every time I question whether doing something is a good idea or utterly inappropriate for me, my career development and my life in general.
I hope they will help you too on your risk-questioning journey.
RULE #1: Getting rid of unnecessary “what if’s”
What if I take a risk and I accept that job in Australia? What if I partner with this co-worker and we launch a new business independently? What if I make a mistake when launching the product? What if…?
I am not saying we need to take all the risks that arise in our lives. Not at all. However, the issue lies in not being reckless –therefore avoiding foolish risks– but taking calculated and meditated ones instead. Since you know yourself better than anyone, follow your intuition and be true to who you are because some people can tolerate more risk than others.
RULE #2: Evaluate the worst-case scenario
What is the worst thing that can happen? If you move to another country to pursue that sparkling new job, are you likely to be unhappy? Would you miss your family and friends? If so, how would you change that?
You will realize straight away that you can gain much more from that experience than you can lose. And trust me, life is all about experiences, moments and people you meet on your path. Seize these opportunities and conquer your fears.
Time is precious, make the most out of it and create unforgettable experiences — and this must be your biggest focus.
“When you take risks you learn that there will be times when you succeed and there will be times when you fail, and both are equally important.”
RULE #3: Change your environment when the answer is not clear enough
Get lost and find yourself. And in order to achieve that, travel as much as you can. Connect to other people and cultures, break bad habits, increase your awareness, reduce all the accumulated stress and for sure, get to know yourself better. Ideas and solutions will come easier than you think.
EXTRA RULE: Follow your inner compass
But do not let it stick permanently in the same direction because then, it will be worthless.
So, whenever people ask you whether taking that risk was a good idea, smile proudly and answer: yes, taking a chance has been awesome.
Originally published at medium.com