November 30, 2017 The biggest risk is not taking any risk.

Did you look at your life yesterday and review your defaults?  What are you doing differently?  One item I would bring to your intention is how you default to the path of least resistance to avoid risk and fear of failure.  Many people will invest money in a certificate of deposit (CD) at a bank because it will give a guaranteed return and no chance to lose the principle.  Seems like the smart move, right?

Well if a CD will earn you an annual return of 0.25 to 1% annually before taxes, have you truly avoided risk?  No, you simply feel secure because your money is not going to disappear completely.  Never mind the fact that your 1% is only going to pay you one cent on every dollar and then you have to pay 10 to 39% income tax on the earnings.  Oh, and the money you did not lose is now worth less because inflation is 2-4% a year.  This is not about your saving method, but I wanted to use this to say, if you are playing it too safe, you are not only, not really playing but you are losing more than if you took risk.

In the scriptures we have the parable of the talents.  In both Matthew and Luke, a master puts his servants in charge of his goods while he is away on a trip. Upon his return, the master assesses the stewardship of his servants. He evaluates them according to how faithful each was in making wise investments of his goods to obtain a profit. It is clear that the master sought some profit from the servants’ oversight. A gain indicated faithfulness on the part of the servants. The master rewards his servants according to how each has handled his stewardship. He judges two servants as having been “faithful” and gives them a positive reward. To the single unfaithful servant who “played it safe,” a negative compensation is given.

Most of us have heard this parable and many have been taught that it is related to finding what you are good at and becoming better.  What if it is deeper than that?  I proclaim it is and most likely even deeper than I understand it at this time.  Clearly, the purpose of life is to learn and grow.  We cannot grow if we “play it safe.”  If we learn by making mistakes but live our lives in a way to avoid ever making mistakes are we a profitable servant?

The most successful people in the history of the world, even in the present day, put everything on the line at times because they know it is the only way to move forward.  The fear of loss is so powerful that it paralyzes most to the point they end up losing everything.  How ironic that the one thing you fear is what will actually happen.

Your mind takes everything you say as a command so make your commands absolutely clear; make sure there is no room whatsoever for misinterpretation. Think of it like this. If you went to the hairstylist and said, “give me a haircut”, but gave no further instructions, would you get exactly the haircut you wanted? No, of course you would not. If you instructed a decorator to decorate your house or a cleaner to clean your house and left them to it, they would do what they thought you wanted them to but would misinterpret your desires and move all your stuff and give you a result you were not happy with. So think of your mind as if it is your personal assistant, your secretary or your stylist: let it know exactly what you want and you are far more likely to get exactly what you want.

If holding yourself back made you happy you would be happy, but we can’t be truly happy if we are not reaching our potential. People who do not realize their potential cannot be fully happy or fulfilled. We don’t fear dying, we fear having lived a life without meaning or purpose; we must have purpose or every day is the same.

If you want to be different you have to do different and it has to be all the time. You cannot become what you need to be by remaining who you are, so learn some new specific skills.  Then get out there and take what others see as a risk but you know is really the only path to success.  Confident people are confident because they know that they will get what they want. They know they’re going to persist and do whatever it takes until they succeed and reach their goals. One of my favorite quotes is, “The lift to success might be out of order but the stairs are always working.” You may have setbacks but learn from those and do things differently until they get to you goal. Do not allow yourself to give up or hold back.  But remember if you risk nothing you risk everything.  “Bad decisions made with good intentions, are still bad decisions.”  James C. CollinsHow The Mighty Fall: And Why Some Companies Never Give In

Are you still living a life by default?

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