This is a re-run of a blog from a couple of years ago, for which I make no apology – it is worth another read.
How often do we get stuck in the same routine, doing the same thing, often with the same people and coasting through our work and even our lives. It’s easy and comfortable and we feel safe. But what would happen to your life if you did one brave thing everyday?
I guess the first question is what constitutes a brave thing? Is it something heroic, where you face mortal danger? Or is it simply something that moves you out of your comfort zone – even for a few minutes, something that gives you a different perspective? I would say both apply, but the opportunity to do the later is much more readily available.
The reality for many people is that they stay safe, play a small game, and settle for OK, while justifying why they can’t or won’t do something simply because it is too risky.
Now I’m not talking about squaring up to lions here! I’m talking about everyday stuff, the opportunities that fly in and out of our lives while we are running the potential scenarios and outcomes through our heads. We look at the risk – real or imagined – and if we don’t like it we create all sorts of reasons why we can’t take the opportunity. Most of us have a great bank of excuses ready to draw on, you know the ones, ‘I’m just too busy’, ‘I can’t get childcare’, ‘it wouldn’t work for me because…’, and a whole load of I’d love to but ….’ excuses.
All of these are great excuses not to expose yourself, but lets be honest what would really happen if you took a bit of a risk each day?
For example: you meet someone you’ve always admired and would love to work with and he says “give me a ring”. Great you think, then you spend days putting off making the call while you perfect what you want to say, or wait for the right moment, etc etc. A week goes by and you’ve not called yet. Then you start to talk yourself out of the call, it’s too late now, they won’t remember me and guess what you never make it. But you do re visit the scenario every now and then just to remind yourself that it wouldn’t have worked for you.
What if you’d just been brave and picked up the phone the next day and said hello and gone from there? You may or may not have got the outcome you wanted, but you’d stand a much better chance of getting it. The likelihood is you’d also save yourself a whole load of emotional energy worrying about it too.
For me doing one brave thing a day quite simply means getting on with the stuff that holds me back in my business and my life. The things I have to stretch myself to do, where I don’t feel quite comfortable or confident. Things like recently running my first live webinar, I was terrified the technology would let me down. It reminded me of a time about 10-12 years ago when I had to give a powerpoint presentation for the first time, same fear. Did I still do it? Yes of course, it wasn’t perfect but it was good enough and the next one was even better, mostly because I was concentrating on the webinar not the technology.
I’d not really thought of stuff like that as being brave, but it is and kind of heroic too. Sort of rescuing yourself from yourself, and don’t we all need and deserve to be saved from time to time. So my challenge for you is to look at what you do and perhaps more importantly what you don’t do that you might want to do, then decide where you might need to take action.
So what difference could you make to your life by doing one brave thing a day?