C’mon… take a risk!

Businessman riding a sharkAt what point did we lose it? Actually, I think it has been a gradual steady movement downward so slow that we didn’t notice it was even happening. It’s become the new normal.

I’m talking about the fear within the business community¬†of risk. It’s palpable and seemingly everywhere. And it’s preventing you from gaining some incredible rewards. And I’m not referring to big enterprise risks, just small personal ones. The ones that pass your desk every day with you hardly even noticing.

Ask yourself if you’ve lately experienced:

  • Searching for a plausible excuse not to try something new in your job because you haven’t found enough consensus?
  • Choosing not to hire a qualified candidate because their personality was a bit outside your comfort zone?
  • Not taking even the first step toward that idea in the back of your mind for a new product or business? (“There’re too many unknowns.”)
  • When asked your opinion at work, your immediate reaction is to conjure up an answer that will be accepted by the status quo.
  • Prevent your professional contact information from getting to anyone but the safest and most familiar people.
  • Eating lunch with the same crowd while having the same conversations because its… well… comfortable.

Fear is an automatic response mechanism built into us from 250,000 years of evolution. That instinctual reaction helped defend ourselves from saber-toothed cat attacks and invading hordes. But that same instinct lives within us today and for many, is preventing growth, grand experiences, rich rewards and the life you deserve.

Here are a few tips that can help you overcome your routine fears:

  • Surround yourself with people less afraid of risk
  • Ask yourself and answer, “What am I really afraid of?”
  • Look for things outside of your comfort zone and participate. “You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.” – Brian Tracy
  • Don’t listen to yourself justifying your fear of taking a risk. Instead, visualize the rewards of taking that seemingly scary action. “More important than what happens to us is how we talk to ourselves about what happens to us.” – a wise man
  • Celebrate your victories on the small courageous acts you take.

Get outside your comfort zone and take some chances. It doesn’t necessarily mean hang gliding tomorrow afternoon, but it might mean selling with enthusiasm to your boss that new idea that could save money for your company.

About Mike Lake

Mike is the Senior Vice President of Marketing for Evergreen Trading. When not playing jazz trombone he is probably obsessing about writing content that will capture the attention and interest of business people and fellow learning junkies everywhere.

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