It’s an automated response – “What if?“
Have you ever noticed that if you have some “insane” (i.e. different) idea, the people closest to you get all clammed up, they hold their breath, their face tightens, their eyes wrinkle, and then, with that intake of air comes all the reasons that you’d be stupid to leave the comfort of what you know for this “crazy” idea you have?
I think the worst is when you have a corporate job, complete with a reliable salary, benefits, and vacation, but dream of doing something that makes you happy full time. Even though you are miserable, know your potential will never be used fully, you’ll never get more than a 1% raise every year for the next 20 years and eventually won’t be able to afford your rent, your body is achy all the time from sitting in front of your computer, you’re bored, and demotivated, the people that love you the most think you’re totally nuts to leave your job in search of something that make you happy.
It feels to me like what’s being said when people try to talk “dreamers” out of their dreams is,
“Happiness doesn’t pay the bills.“
(And, you know this is complete BS, right? Ask all the people in the world who went their own way, and are now artists, writers, programmers, or run their own airline, and they will tell you how ridiculous this belief is!) The funny thing is, the people that love you are trying to be helpful with their “What if you end up poor and homeless” concerns and look out for you. I have even asked a couple “what if-fers” this question:
“Why is your automatic assumption that someone who leaves corporate to pursue, say, their own business, will fail? How come you don’t assume that person will succeed? Especially if you believe in them, and their capabilities, why present them with all the reasons to bail out on their dream instead of encouragement?”
Ironically, they don’t even realize they had the assumption of failure as their lead thought! It’s apparently just safer to protect those that you care about, rather than encourage them to take risks, especially when your own paradigm doesn’t yet have enough proof that risk leads to success.
My question is, what would the world be like if we all encouraged each other to succeed, instead of pointing out all the areas we might fail? And that leads me to my BullBusting Challenge:
Over the next week, seek out people – friends, family, strangers! – who have “crazy ideas”. Look for the people that you believe in, trust, judge as competent and capable. Talk to them about their “crazy idea” and offer only words of encouragement – tell them you believe in them, and see where your belief inspires them to go!