This last week, my daughter was the angel in the school Nativity. She practiced for days and had her lines down but she was still nervous. She asked me, “What happens if I get it wrong Momma?” My response was, “Well, from your perspective, what’s the worst that could happen?” She said, the kids would laugh at her. I acknowledged that it could be that the kids would laugh at her but likely they would not, but instead she would just feel a little embarrassed. She quickly came back with “But I don’t want to be embarrassed.” I asked her if being embarrassed was the worst thing in the whole world? She thought about it and said, “Yes, it’s the worst thing in the whole world.” With that settled, I told her there was nothing else to do then but tell her teacher she would need to find someone else to be the Angel. That, however, was not what she wanted either. I told her that if she really wanted to be the Angel, then she was going to have to be willing to face the worst thing that could happen. Our conversation ended when she agreed that potentially being embarrassed was better than not being able to be the Angel in the school play.
As it turns out, she did great. No fumbles or mistakes but a fluent and articulate delivery of the Angel’s lines.
Like many of us, what we want is in direct opposition with our worst case scenario. We want success but we don’t want to experience the discomfort or pain associated with risk. Because let’s be honest, failure can produce severe unwanted consequences. Before my husband and I agreed to launch my second business and take out the loan associated with the business, we asked ourselves the same question I asked my daughter. “What is the worst thing that could happen?” The answer: we’d have to sell our house to pay for the debt and start all over again. Yikes! But then we asked the question, “What is the best thing that could happen?” The answer: we provide education and tools to thousands of leaders and experience financial freedom early in our lives.
Big dreams come from the willingness to make big moves and take big risks. Sometimes there is discomfort associated with stepping onto the ledge and pain if we make a bad move that leads to a major fall. But that is what risk is all about. Creating tolerance for risk comes when we are willing to accept the discomfort or pain associated with the risk we are taking. If the pain of our worst case scenario is less than not taking the risk at all i.e. not being the Angel in the school nativity, then we know we need to courageously move to action.
Here is to making courageous action on your big dreams as we wrap up 2016 and move into 2017.
Share with me situations you took a risk. What was the outcome?