I was out climbing with my son earlier this week. He's home from college on break; he got serious about climbing last year and dragged me into it. My first route was pretty technical (for me) and there were a couple points when I was about to stop but I pushed through and made it to the top. When I got down, my son had some wise advice. He said I will improve if I don't worry about falling and If I'm not falling, I'm not pushing myself hard enough.
I came across a set of videos on Yahoo; The Failure Club. This was created as a reality TV show that never got picked up by a network, but it's along the same lines as my climbing; go do something without fear of failure…even expect failure…and see what happens.
It's easy to play it safe at work. We don't want to stand out as a trouble maker or risk taker, especially during an economic slowdown. But is that the best choice? If we knew our boss wouldn't penalize us if we failed, how much risk would we take? What could we achieve?
If you're like a lot of people, you came up with some resolutions at New Years. How many risky items are on your list? How many new things are you going to try? How many things that you could fail at? When I'm climbing and not having a good day, it usually isn't because I'm falling; it's usually because I'm afraid to try and I convince myself that I can't do it. So get rid of the self-doubt and don't be afraid.