Take Action

Upon the completion of my 200-mile Ragnar Road Michigan race, I was awarded a medal. Every person who crossed the finish line received one as well.

The cool thing about the Ragnar Road Michigan race is that the 12 medals the team receives contain a message. Individually, the messages may not make much sense. Combined, they tell a story.

Yet, the medal I received contained a quote that I love to live by. The back of my medal said:

What’s the worst that could happen?

I love this phrase. The phrase helps me to push through fears and, more importantly, take action when I don’t want to.

Man leaping over water as the sun is setting

Photo by Kid Circus on Unsplash

Take Action

I think about many of the things that I have accomplished in life. Had I not asked myself what the worst that could happen was, I wouldn’t have accomplished much.

The answer to the question is often “Nothing that would kill me.”

In leadership, the answer is the same. The worst that could happen isn’t death. It’s failure. And failure isn’t fatal most of the time.

When you’re on the edge of making a decision, stop wavering. Ask yourself the question that was on the back of my Ragnar medal. And take action.

How To Take Action

You may be paralyzed with fear even after asking yourself the question. You may be one of those people whose answer is always death.

It doesn’t have to be that way. You can train yourself to get over your fatal fears and become an action taker. You can take action by doing the following:

Take a small action:

The action you take doesn’t have to be life-changing. You can make simple, small actions that will move you forward.

I’ve jumped out of airplanes, climbed frozen waterfalls, and run a marathon. Those are significant actions.

The significant actions didn’t start with big action, though. Each one required me to make small actions that built up to the significant action.

The small actions are safe. Take those first. Eventually, you’ll see them add up to life-changing moments.

Talk to people:

There are people who have done scary things. They have the experience to know what can be done (and sometimes what cannot be done).

Talk to these people. Find out what made them take action. See whether or not they’d do it again.

You’ll be surprised. The people making major moves aren’t special. Their stories will be similar to yours.

All they did was take action.

Talk to them. Their stories will inspire you.

Just do it:

The Nike company has a saying. It is Just Do It. I can’t argue with their expression.

When you’re faced with a choice, just make a choice. Just do it, as they would say.

Once you’ve done it, evaluate what you’ve done. Do you need to do it again? Would you do it again? Did it kill you?

Taking action will move you forward. Standing in indecision will leave you right where you’ve always been.

Make the choice. Take action.

What’s the worst that could happen?

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