Playing it safe

Growing up I learned to play things safe, primarily because I wasn’t encouraged to think for myself, or outside the box.

I also learned too late that we don’t have to experience things in a way that others dictate. We must be proactive and assertive for that to potentially happen, but even then it may not work because that depends on our circumstances and the person we’re struggling with.

That not everyone will have our best interests at heart because they have their own. I learned that gaining another person’s approval didn’t give my life purpose either.  Sadly, too many times our lives are spent moving boundaries back and forth to somewhere comfortable, trying to find a position that works for us.

But when it comes to risk, it matters that we take the risks that matter to us and the ones that we think will pay off.  ‘For example, we may gamble on the Stock Market, knowing we may lose money, but it’s a risk we take anyway.’

The risks we take are defined by how we see success and how we think we might fail. Others may simply take risks and then worry later. Not everyone will calculate the risks first. That says a lot about them.

Although I played it safe, I also tread with caution. I was comfortable that way. It’s important we learn to be safe, but safe can also mean risky if we don’t listen to ourselves and instead follow other people’s methods or advice. Playing it safe means taking on things that we’re comfortable with.

Sadly, risks will always be there, but it’s how we manage and quantify those risks that becomes the difference between success and failure. It’s about what works for us, quantifying those risks, having done our research first before we take the plunge.

7 Apr, 2018

6 thoughts on “Playing it safe

  1. It’s human nature to play it safe and it’s only when we take risks of different degrees at different stages in our lives that we will learn and also discover that those risk are part of our experience.

    We can learn from risks, we learn about ourselves and we develop knowledge to help in future decisions. Sadly, if we don’t learn then taking risks can be irresponsible and harmful.

    1. Thank, yes I agree. I would just add to your last sentence that not everyone who takes risks learns from them.

  2. Taking risks wasn’t exactly encouraged in the world I grew up in and usually the opposite that we would remain compliant with what my parents wanted us to do.

    Like I just told my friend, we were well trained in the art of people pleasing, to the point where we were supposed to ignore what we wanted.

    Playing it safe eventually became the easier thing to do rather than upset the apple cart and create any kind of disturbance to the natural order of things, even though things were absolutely insane.

    I now have to learn how to overcome this overwhelmingly paralyzing fear that has kept me a prisoner in my own mind and far too many toxic relationships, before it’s too late.

    I can’t afford to keep playing it safe when it means being trapped with someone who doesn’t seem to really care what it is that I want out of life.

    1. Thanks Randy. Yes, sadly when someone doesn’t care for what the other person wants out of life, they also won’t care for that person, because they’re self-absorbed, only thinking about themselves.

      In the short-term when anyone ‘plays it safe’ it may seem easier because decisions aren’t being made, but certainly when it comes to relationships in the longer term it’s never easy. Everything gets harder the longer we leave things.

      In terms of taking risks, I believe playing it safe is better, particularly where risks put us in a worse financial place or a more dangerous place.

      Where we’re living with ‘the familiar’ and ‘it’s what we know’ scenario, they’re certainly no reason to ‘play it safe.’

  3. I take risks, but I’ll send in a probe first and chat with my potential life threatening situation.

    Then, I’ll wait a little longer before I make a decision.

    1. That’s great. Thanks Tim. You’re weighing up the pros and cons before coming to a decision.

      Exactly how it should be done.

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