Risk Going Too Far
Success is an anchor. You don’t move ahead for fear of losing what you have. It’s easy to take risks when you don’t have anything to lose.
Fear of taking risks destroys dreams.
“Only those who will risk going too far
can possibly find out how far one can go.” T. S. Eliot
Going too far is pushing to the point of failure. You never know how far you can go until you’ve failed.
Going too far is:
- Pushing your talent beyond its capacity. Warren Buffett said, “Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing.”
- Accepting challenges you’ve never attempted.
- Expecting untested people to step up.
- Calling tested people to step up in untested arenas.
- Can you live with not trying?
- Who should you invite into your life before you push forward?
- Is it possible to avoid an all or nothing situation?
- Can you identify risk points where failure isn’t’t final?
- Where is recovery easier if you fail?
- What contingency plans can you make?
- How can you find “ands” rather than “ors?”
Going too far is inevitable. I’m often asked how I write so much. I have so much to say because I fail so frequently. I know what doesn’t work.
Every successful leader has a bucket of wisdom
filled with things that didn’t work.
The danger of failing by pushing too far is:
- Refusing to do it again.
- Failure to adapt.
- Blaming rather than taking responsibility. The first step of progress is, “I screwed up.”
Failure that comes from pushing too far is a gift. It shows you who you are and clarifies what matters.
After pushing too far:
- Invite others in. Don’t close down.
- Reach out. Don’t pull back.
- Determine what’s important.
The dream in your heart is worth the risk.
How can leaders risk going too far?
What have you learned from going too far?
In regards to the quote – Pushing your talent beyond its capacity. Warren Buffett said, “Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing.” The first time you do something, you are clueless, no matter how much experience you think you have. Someone like Warren Buffett should know this, and probably does, just that his “first times” were so long ago.
Well there is the story of the old bull and the young bull!!!!! Lol
So whatever I do proceed with care!!
Next Sunday on my birthday I am risking everything! Rolling the fuzzy dice, taking my chance.
I am going to Change the world by Connecting the Whys and Hearts of 1 million people in 45 days.
Like Cicero on the beach, ships all burning, only one way to go…..FORWARD!!!!!!!!
Of course I am starting with why.
One personal reason is my Mom has Alzheimer’s and I am trying to do something spectacular for her before she can’t remember. Wanna help?
Mostly though it is because I am just a tincy bit, but that is all it takes…more afraid to try and fail mightily than not try at all. You mean I am telling myself I have a chance?(dumb and dumber reference) hehe
Maybe some of you will be Inspired and help me CHANGE the world.
If you would that would be a real cool birthday present!!!!
My story and I am sticking to it!
Have a good one Dan
SP back to the present
Whoops. Meant more afraid to not try than to try and fail mightily!!!!
Oh the humanity!!!
SP back to now giggling!!!!
I’m a firm believer in the positive roll of fear in our forward movement. Being afraid not to try is a great fear.
I so believe in inviting others in to help “push” you forward. It’s not always the obvious suspects. Building trusting relationships with people outside of your natural habitat will stretch your thinking and expand your possibilities.
Thank you for saying the following.
“After pushing too far:
– Invite others in. Don’t close down.
– Reach out. Don’t pull back.
– Determine what’s important.
The dream in your heart is worth the risk.”
It’s powerful and important, and not easy for most of us given cultural and societal fear and consequences of failure.
Inviting others in, reaching out, and opening up the dialogue and reflection opens us and our teams to greater vulnerability. And from this place much can emerge – from authenticity and deeper, truer and more mutually supportive relationships to clarity of purpose, commonality of vision and greater courage and creativity.
I’m glad you caught those ideas. Our tendency is to shoot oursevles in the foot after we push too far.
Thanks for adding the term “vulnerability” to the conversation. The things that matter most make us feel the most vulnerable… opening up feels even more dangerous. But, closing down is the real danger.
‘The dream in your heart is worth the risk.’ – Yes. It. Is. Thanks for this reminder Dan!
A good useful post!
I liked your valuable comment- ‘The fear of taking risks destroys dreams’. It’s true yet it calls for a tremendous courage to open up.
My experience reveals that it is the recipient’s side that matters. There is no point of trying to move them to think differently when they are irrational and disrespectful with little trust. The best thing is look for a better change rather than trying to push your case. Things go unheard in the deaf ears!!
The man with self-esteem and necessary abilities will never sit back on the ground of fear.
Thank you Dr. Asher,
I always appreciate it when people come at a topic from a new angle.
“Success is an anchor and people fear of losing it” is really true concept for most of the people. I think, in the organization, when people are more concerned about position, then do everything to gain that position. In the process, they develop a kind of ego/narcissism to the position. They start defining their satisfaction, happiness and success related to gained position. When such success is appreciated and acknowledged by others, they reinforce that ego attached to the position.
On the other hand, there are people who define their success in different way. They think doing right things and their responsibility in proper way is the success. In the process, they get happy when they get what they deserve. But when they do not get what they deserve, they redefine their success and retain their happiness.
In the organization, there are many people in the first category. And both category of people are needed in the system. One can learn a lot from the experience of both categories of people. Learning can be done by analyzing consequences out the action, decisions and behavior employed in achieving those positions.
3 years ago this month I had the above experience and it lives with me in my teaching and coaching engagements everyday…I experienced my “directed limits” which is essentially the conscious failure point in your current intellectual and physical skills combined with a persons emotional limits! Maybe, “limits” and “failure points” are the same coin. Great posts Dan.
Dan, This is great advice on taking risk. I think your Seven Questions are essential to ask. Carefully answering them can help improve a situation from that of a pure risk to a calculated risk.
My additional two cents worth: 1. RIsking and losing and recovering takes a strong personal constitution and an equally strong support network. Once you have taken risk, you are much better prepared to encourage others to take risk; 2. Make sure the risk you are about to take does not unduly expose your family (refer carefully to Seven Questions — especially 3 thru 6).
Good morning Dan. When pushing myself to the point of failure I realise areas of my working life that require improvement. I may have to learn a new skill, or even educate myself in an unfamiliar area. One positive asset of my professional approach is networking and being able to expedite more efficiantly than most. This has to start with making, or allowing yourself to be availiable to others when they need my assistance. People are often reluctant to go out of ‘thier way’ to help others who ‘do not recipricate’. Good networking reveals special talents of those who work around and with you while making you aware of those who can be counted on when amidst your time of need. It’s during times of struggle that your solid work at networking provides avenues for problem solving. Anyone who strives for upward mobility must have a desire for sucsess that is GREATER than thier fear of failure. Those who are afraid to take risk’s in life rarely accomplish much… Cheers Dan
“Every successful leader has a bucket of wisdom
filled with things that didn’t work.”…bucket might be minimizing it a bit here. 😉 I have a whole backyard full…go dig into it and learn a little more from past failings, just have to be brave enough to machete into that jungle…somehow more keeps getting added. Getting out of that very comfortable comfort zone and creating an internal and honest dynamic tension often is not fun, but necessary for growth…
Another amazing post. One of my old bosses once said to me if you don’t take the risks you need you would never succeed in life. Risk is all about taking that leap. Knowing the right risks to take is the challenge.