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Taking Risks For Success

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Author: Kim Brevard

My son's youth football season has come to an end, and I am left with a shocking discovery that blows me away. Kids often mimic adults and at least half a dozen of my son's teammates are afraid of taking risks associated with playing the game. These kids signed up to play football, practiced everyday with the team, but when it came time to play the game - they chickened out. Instead, they stayed on the sideline and watched. Taking risks terrified these kids so much that they preferred to remain spectators for various reasons.

Of course we know that playing football involves taking risks. Kids are taking the risk of getting hurt, making mistakes, being yelled at by the coaches and so forth. Needlessly to say, I was amazed when one of the coaches admitted to my husband that the same kids had to play both offense and defense, because other kids were afraid to play. It made me wonder why they wanted to be a part often team in the first place.

Then it dawned on me - these kids represent what many of us go through on a daily basis. Our game is life and just like these kids, many of us avoid taking risks. We like our comfort zone and do our best to avoid pain. The problem is, however, without taking risks, we never truly experience the exhilaration and thrill of success and achievement. As it stands, anything worth achieving comes with some sort of pain or discomfort. Whether it's taking the risks of starting a business, standing up for yourself, entering into a new relationship, or pursuing a promotion at work - we open ourselves up to potential loss, pain, and rejection.

Just like these kids who prefer to sit on the sidelines and watch others play, we often do the same thing. We tell ourselves things like, "I can't start my own business, the timing is not right." Or, "I don't need a relationship right now - look what happened with Mary and Bob." Meanwhile, we continue to play it safe - wanting our lives to be better, but afraid to reach for more. We allow our aversion to taking risks to keep us out of the game. We're spectators to the people who are succeeding.

The Kids Taking Risks:

Not surprising, the kids taking risks on the football field did experience the discomfort of being tackled by their opponents, yelled at by the coaches, as well as suffering injuries and making mistakes. These kids even experienced losing the game. Interestingly, these same kids taking risks experienced the thrill of scoring touchdowns, the exhilaration of making a big play, and the excitement of winning the game. The more these kids taking risks played the game, the better they became at overcoming obstacles, dealing with setbacks, and experiencing success. More importantly, these kids taking risks enjoyed the entire season and look forward to many more.

Taking Risks The Smart Way:

My son's youth football season reminded me of another important lesson when taking risks. When taking risks we need to be intelligent about it. I often wonder if the kids who were afraid of taking risks on the football field were playing the right game. Not every kid is meant to be a football player. One thing successful people often advise is to do what you love and acquire the needed skills and knowledge to succeed. Just like kids are pushed into playing sports by well-meaning parents and guardians, as adults we can be pushed into games we don't want to play either (career, relationships, etc..). If a game is not for us, then we need to find the right game.

Also, taking risks is easier when we prepare. Youth football coaches prepare their players by teaching them the game, implementing practice, studying the opponents, planning strategy and motivating the team to win. We must do the same thing. If your taking risks then why not play to win?

Just as important, don't let your external conditions decide if it's worth taking risks. Many of us do this. We decide not to pursue a new job, because of the competition or we chose not to start our own business, because similar businesses already exists. I can tell you - in football the better team doesn't always win. It's the team that's better prepared and who wants it more that usually comes out on top.

The bottom line is this - taking risks is key to your success. You can't succeed unless you play the game. Find the right game for you and start playing. Not taking risks is a risk you can't afford if you want to succeed in life.

About the author: Kim Brevard helps you fine tune your personal growth for success. You'll be pleasantly surprised how small pockets of time helps your self-improvement. For free strategies and tips, visit now.

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