People Remember Risk Takers: How to Become One in 9 Steps

Source: iStock
Source: iStock

Risk is a fundamental and unavoidable element present in everyone’s life. No matter who you are, what you’re doing, or what you plan to do, some level of risk is haunting every step. Are you a budding executive, gunning for a big promotion? You’re risking professional relationships, or putting yourself in a position where others might retaliate. On the flip side, you may be young and thinking of enrolling in college. There’s a lot of risk in doing that – you could end up hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt, with a relatively useless degree.

Or, you could use that time to blossom, network, and put yourself in a position for a lifetime of success. Big risks bring about big rewards. Or crushing failures. It’s the nature of risk.

Elon Musk took a big gamble in founding Tesla, for example. Henry Ford did the same when he opted to double the salaries of his employees a century ago.

It’s the fear of crushing failure that drives many people to live their lives in a fairly conservative way. Many people have a lot to lose, and are more apt to take the safe and traveled path rather than putting a lot of chips on the table, and attempting to blaze their own trail. Being a risk-taker is a quality we see among many CEOs, politicians, and otherwise very successful people. The risk, in these cases, was worth the reward. The trick is to develop the nerve to be a risk-taker, and to follow through.

Of course, you don’t need to go in blind. There are plenty of things you can do to mitigate your levels of risk, shield yourself from the potential fallout of failure, and increase your chances of success. Those things are the subject of a new infographic, published by none other than Vegas Extreme Skydiving.

Because if anyone is going to understand risk, it’s a skydiving company.

That infographic, which can be seen here, is dense, and a veritable treasure trove of information for those looking to increase their ability to take, and handle the associated stresses, of risk.

Digging into the meat of the graphic, Vegas Extreme Skydiving presents us with some concise, easy to follow steps to help us become risk-takers, and explains why we should do it. Check out the full post for all of the details, if you want to get more in-depth. But as for the way to become an efficient risk-taker (something many employers love, by the way), follow this 9-step plan:

1. Fake it until you make it

If this sounds familiar, it’s because you’ve likely heard it before. It’s the same path to building confidence – and confidence is key if you’re going to take big risks.

2. Stop catastrophizing

Unfamiliar with the term ‘catastrophizing’? Well, it basically means that you need to stop letting your mind wander off into extreme territories. Keep focused on the task at hand, and concentrate on efficiently and successfully taking care of what’s in front of you. Every move is not going to lead to the worst-case scenario.

3. Set goals

This is simple enough. Much has been written and said about goal-setting, and it’s a healthy habit that everyone should adopt. If you’re new to a goal-oriented approach, start small. Make it a point to accomplish something every day, no matter how mundane.

4. Try a ‘sink or swim’ approach

This basically means that you should stop obsessing about decisions, and simply jump in. You may fail — but you might uncover a new talent as well. You’ll never know until you try. It’s as simple as sinking or swimming.

5. Risk getting turned down

This is what most of us fear: failing. Teach yourself to deal with the anxiety and fears surrounding getting turned down, be it for a raise, promotion, or dinner invitation. Most of the time, the worst thing that can happen when we put ourselves out there is that we get turned down, and have to deal with a bruised ego.

6. Learn to fail positively

Easy enough. Learn from your mistakes. Every failure is a lesson.

7. Do something extraordinary

Taking a big risk is about doing something extraordinary. This is what separates you from the herd – an ability or willingness to take the jump. You could end up making a giant leap, and sending a serious message to those around you.

8. Challenge yourself

Address your limitations. Focus on what you’re shortcomings are, and tackle them head on. As you get better, you’ll gain confidence, and become a stronger, more well-rounded individual.

9. Don’t go it alone

Remember that you’re not by yourself. You have friends, family, coworkers, and classmates. Everyone is struggling, especially with confidence and anxiety. Support each other. And lend a helping hand, when you can.

Again, for the complete infographic, packed with more details, check out Vegas Extreme Skydiving’s original post. We assure you, it’s not a risky click.

Follow Sam on Facebook and Twitter @SliceOfGinger

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