Friday Review: Risk


What is your current tolerance for risk?  Here are a few risk-related posts you may have missed.


“The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short, but in setting our aim too low and achieving our mark.”




“The world will never discover a person who is hiding in the crowd.”




“Sometimes your only available transportation is a leap of faith.”




“Watch the turtle. He only moves forward by sticking his neck out.”

“Watch the turtle. He only moves forward by sticking his neck out.”

—Lou Gerstner, former CEO of IBM

Image from Unsplash by Amauri Acosta Montiel

My daughter Rachel’s favorite animal is the turtle. She has many stuffed animals and other tchotchkes to prove it.

It happens that she has lived a life in which she has stuck her neck out many times to move forward on various personal and professional priorities. In college, she did door-to-door sales for an educational products company. She worked 80-85 hours a week, with plenty of rejections along the way. Nevertheless, she pulled in about $25k each summer, as opposed to the 12-week, minimum wage jobs some of her classmates took on.


To what degree are you playing it safe in your personal and professional worlds? What top priority issue is calling you to courageously stick your neck out even if you were to progress at a turtle’s pace?

As children we are taught not to play with fire not how to play with fire

“As children we are taught not to play with fire, not how to play with fire.”

—Steven Kotler, American Author, Journalist, and Entrepreneur

Image of a man spiraling a wand of fire

Image from Unsplash by Peter John Maridable

Looking back to childhood I remember two times when playing with fire got me in big trouble. The first time was when Mom caught me playing with matches. The second was when I decided it would be interesting to put my paper napkin into our lit Hanukkah candles.

The control and use of fire was a pivotal point in human evolution and cultural advancement. Providing heat and the ability to cook food are just two factors that permitted the expansion of human activity across our planet.


How and in what ways can we shift our thinking regarding the potential risky fires of life, and harness their power more fully?

How would doing so with our children inspire greater creativity, innovation, and achievements to better our world?

Don’t just go with the flow

“Don’t just go with the flow, take some dares through the rapids.”

—Author Unknown

Image of a person standing on a rickety wood bridge over rapids

Image from Unsplash by Benjamin Davies

If your life were a movie or TV show, how likely is it that it would be a blockbuster everyone talks about?

Mine would probably not be a big hit with most people. When I ask people who know me best to describe me, some words that pop up often include: dependable, disciplined, reliable, steady, cooperative, honest, loyal, and friendly.

Being a “Steady Eddie” has served me well, and I consider myself very happy with my reasonable, predictable life.

On the other hand, there are many displays in my office of my favorite quote: “When patterns are broken, new worlds will emerge.” This thought constantly reminds me to keep checking in to see where I am committed to something bigger, better, or just different from “going with the flow.” It’s at these times I periodically jump into the fast-moving or riskier waters of life, and go for it. It’s interesting to note that a high percentage of these times are associated with some of my most memorable and significant accomplishments.


What is one important area of your life in which it is time to jump into the rapids and be a bit more daring?

To Dare is to Lose your Foothold for a Moment

“To dare is to lose your foothold for a moment. To not dare is to lose yourself.”

—Swedish Proverb

Image of a man's foot about to step on a banana peel

Image from Flickr by Perry Hall

In the famous song “My Way,” Frank Sinatra sang the line: “Regrets, I’ve had a few, but then again, too few to mention.”

When we look at our own significant achievements or if we look at the accomplishments of others we admire, in virtually all cases risk and the willingness to dare to do things our way was involved.

Unfortunately, those who don’t dare the momentary loss of footing remain on what they perceive as solid ground. They risk loosing themselves, and live lives with far too many regrets.


Where and on what issues is it time to throw caution to the wind and dare to live more of the life of your dreams?

Feel free to reply to this post with the actions you plan to take.


Wear Out or Rust Out

“Let us rather run the risk of wearing out than rusting out.”

—Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of the United States

Image of Barry's odometer at 200,014 miles

My car just reached a milestone, passing the 200,000 mile mark!

In some ways I feel pretty happy, given I have never owned a car that lasted so long and was so dependable.

Beyond the great value this car has given me, I fondly recall all the wonderful outings, adventures, vacations, and new places it took me, my family, and others.

I also take pleasure in the fact that it keeps on going, remaining safe and highly useful, as long as I keep it well maintained.


How can you maintain yourself in good working condition, to continue your life journey beyond what you might expect?  It sure beats rusting out, parked in a garage, and going nowhere!

Friday Review Risk


Are you a risk-taker or a risk-avoider?  Here are a few risk-related posts you may have missed. Click on the link to read the full message.


“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”



QC #1105b


“The world will never discover a person who is hiding in the crowd.”




QC #1105c


“Those who will not take a chance seldom have one thrust upon them.”





hiding in the crowd

“The world will never discover a person who is hiding in the crowd.”

– Dr. Mardy Grothe, psychologist

520Image from Flickr by Si1very.

When my children were young, we would often play a searching game with them called “Where’s Waldo?” The books in this series consisted of detailed double-spread illustrations depicting dozens or hundreds of people doing amusing things at a given location.

Readers were challenged to find Waldo, a slender, glasses-wearing, nerdy character sporting a red and white striped shirt, bobble hat, and blue trousers.

Unfortunately, most people don’t like taking the time to find the “Waldos” of opportunity in their world. They much prefer opportunities to stand out in the world shouting, “Here I am!”


What special efforts can you make or what goal can you accomplish today that will have you stand out from the crowd?

the risk to remain tight

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

– Anaïs Nin, author

SONY DSCImage from Flickr by Matt Brittaine.

Safety and security are strong values for many people. They represent part of our collective comfort zones that play an important part in who we are. Unfortunately, there is often a very limiting and sometimes painful consequence to this “better safe than sorry” approach to life.


If a flower misses the rain and sunshine by not blooming, what are you potentially missing by not summoning the courage to blossom into your full expression of yourself? What actions will you take today to blossom?

Please reply and let me know what happens.

#110: “Don’t be afraid to go out on a limb. That’s where the fruit is.”

– Attribution uncertain

Have you ever picked an apple from the trunk of a tree? Me neither! The sweetness of life can only be found when we go out on those proverbial limbs and take a risk.

We must face failure, change, getting hurt, and looking foolish in order to explore our visions and reach beyond our grasp. How else can we experience all that life has to offer?


Where are you playing it too safe, and missing out on the sweet fruits of life?

What are the limbs of life that you can climb out on, to reach what you deeply desire?

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