risk

The risk and reward of being f---ing brave.

Every time I want to write or type a curse in my blog post, I chicken out. There's a voice inside me that says, don't do it.

It feels like a metaphor for my life. And maybe yours, too. 

Do you hear that same voice? The one that says, "don't do it." For whatever reason.

Because it goes against the grain in some way.

Because it would cost you something.

Because it requires you being vulnerable.

Because it means you could "fail".

Because it means changing something about yourself.

Because there's no guarantee it would work.

Because of what happened last time you tried something.

 

Yep. All those thoughts clamor around when we are poised on the edge of some kind of decision or action: personally or professionally. And the longer we sit there, the more agonizing it can be. We are faced with the decision to act in the face of uncertainty. We get to choose whether we will stay put, in the hamster wheel we've been in, or we will summon the courage to CHOOSE CHANGE.

We don't know how or if it will work. We don't get a safety net. We might possibly fall flat on our faces. We might get rejected. We might be ignored. We might see in stunning brilliance our many faults and character flaws.

Or none of those might happen. Or maybe some do.

Or we get hand-picked, exactly as we are, just because. We receive all green lights and a big bold YES. We ask and receive. We put it out there and the results are magnificent. We get thanked and chosen and celebrated.

And that's the risk and reward of being fucking brave. 

 

Each day we wake up, our odds are 50/50. It can go either way. The coin is in our hands and we can flip it or not.

I recently texted the title of this blog post to someone I know. It was a sentence I came up with on the spot as I sent her a few encouraging words. She was on the brink of something big and she was facing some self-doubt. It was easy for me to see how successful she would be, she's an exceptionally smart and tenacious person. Her courage is above-average. Her charisma is incredibly charming. And she still confessed deep hesitation and concern about the outcome.

And I could relate. I feel it every day. My personal and professional worlds have evolved and improved from a series of failures and successes, each one possible because of the risks I took each day. Quitting jobs that didn't feel right. Withdrawing from relationships when they weren't feeling good. Changing my gender identity three years into my business. Sometimes the risks led to failures that stacked up to the point of rendering me paralyzed. Too many in a row left me feeling discouraged. And then I would get a win. A solid, undeniable success. And I got back in the game.

Some things will work, some will not. We can never know the outcome of something before we try. We can only know the freedom we feel from trying and letting go of our attachment to how things pan out. 

And that's the risk and reward of being fucking brave. 

 

 

Risk

Today's post is about risk. It's as much about what we stand to gain as well as what we may lose from taking a chance in life.

I have never been a fan of gambling---for someone born and raised in New Jersey, I've only been to Atlantic City a handful of times. I don't like the idea of wasting my money on something that may or may not have a payout.

But sometimes life forces us to gamble something we have whether we like it or not. We are safe and comfortable with some material possession, a relationship, a business agreement and then suddenly the Universe cues us that a change is imminent.

We have to choose between growth and stagnation and during this time of choice and transition we are faced with the ultimate consequences of whatever it is we choose to do. We stand to gain or lose no matter our decision.

Think of a time in your life when you were faced with a choice---what did you do? What did you stand to gain? What did you lose?

Recently I was faced with several major life decisions---each with a major cost and benefit. I had to weigh each carefully, ponder the pros and cons of each action, conversation and motivations involved in each decision.

I have been blessed with generous mentors and unconditional support from wise friends. I also have spent countless hours of introspection and have surrounded myself with wisdom and skills from many sources. I knew I possessed what I needed to make wise, informed decisions about risk and prudence.

You have to take a leap, but be sure you have provided yourself with a safety net. It makes the jumping easier when you're on belay.

I had previously assigned a negative stigma to risk. I had only ever feared change and thought risk always meant a loss of some sort. I have come to know that to be very true. With every risk comes the death of something--but it doesn't necessarily mean we lose something that we can't get back or that the loss in and of itself is a bad thing. Perhaps we needed something to end in order to create space for something new and amazing in our lives.

Often, it is in risking that we become stronger, more confident and gain more than we previously possessed.

I learned this concept while studying at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Applying the concept in my own life is both terrifying and exciting. To be awake to one's own evolution is both humbling and precious.

What awareness do you bring to your fears and your own courage to overcome them?