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How To Get Over Your Fear Of Taking A Career Risk – It’s Worth It

Written by: Pin Cher, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


When you’re considering taking an enormous career leap, it’s easy to be controlled by fear, anxieties, and self-doubt and I wasn’t an exception from it. Whether you’re thinking of starting your own start-up, making a serious career change, or taking a leap of faith to pursue your passion, it’s totally normal to feel all the hesitations about the uncertainty involved. I had a stable job with a steady income, but I took some risk in my career, too.

Taking risks in your career is not always a piece of cake and can feel uncomfortable when your livelihood is at stake. Making career moves out of your comfort zone without the 100% guarantee of a better outcome is often enough to make most people stay in their roles indefinitely, and unhappily.

But sometimes if you’re taking planned and calculated risks it can be empowering and even benefits your career and life in the long run. Here is something that is worth thinking about of few ways effective risk-taking can grow your career…

When was the last time you really thought about how risky the risk you’re taking is? While all of your concerns seem legitimate and real, sometimes the magnitude of these hesitations is often blown out of proportion.

Let’s take a moment to really think about how risky taking a year to try something bold, brave, and adventurous really is. Try this logic:

  • Let’s say that the average person lives to be about 80 years old.

  • Then, let’s assume it might take you about one year to figure out if this big brave idea of yours might have potential.

  • Now put the two together: One year out of 80 is 1/80, or 1.25% of your life…

That seems surprisingly small, right? In fact, when you think of it like this, nothing seems that risky anymore, even if you might not succeed in the end.

We can even take a step further: Let’s say you did work night and day on your new start-up idea or moved to a new city. One of two things would happen: either it would be highly successful and transform your life completely, or it would fail but you would still be rewarded with a life lesson or two.

When framed in this manner, any new venture, idea, or “crazy” thought you’re considering seems much less daunting, and that’s something powerful to think about.

By its very nature, you taking risks implies that you can gain something—or lose something. And the thought of losing your hard-earned job, salary, or reputation can be frightening. Yet the truth is that if you don’t take risks, you might be missing out on great opportunities that might either help boost your career to the next level or make a career change that will increase your well-being, enjoyment, and happiness.

Signs it might be time to take a risk :

According to Forbes, there are several signs that might be time to take a risk in your career:

  • You’re not advancing anymore: If you’ve hit a ceiling at your job and feel as if you’re wasting your potential, it’s probably best to start looking for another opportunity to use your talents.

  • You’re bored at work: When your work becomes boring, your performance can suffer because you might not be motivated to work as hard as usual. This means it’s time to look for a new direction.

  • Your life is changing: When your life is in flux, it can create a natural inclination to make a change in your career. Sometimes this is an emotional reaction—but it can also be the final push you need to move on.

  • You have a calling: Yes, you can pursue a calling and make money at the same time. If a specific occupation or objective is calling you, you’ll feel dissatisfied in your career until you pivot towards it.

Take calculated risks

It’s important to know that taking a risk doesn’t mean that you simply need to be reckless, but instead to do your research to get to know the lay of the land before making any career moves.

For example, if you want to reach the next level in your career, it’s wise to seek a conversation with your supervisor to see what your options are before looking outside of your organisation.

Or if you’re in engineering but you’d love to work as a designer, take some upskill classes and take on a couple of freelance gigs in the evenings and on weekends. Then, when you know what you’re getting yourself into, you can start taking some practical steps towards actually making that career change.

Taking risks can be just what you need to boost your career to the next level or to find the calling you love—but make sure you take calculated risks. Don’t burn any bridges behind you, and make sure that you always have something to fall back on.

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Pin Cher, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Pin Cher is a personal development & career coach and comes from a diverse and international background. Her passion lies in working and coaching with corporate professionals and high performers to achieve even greater success. She helps them unlock their professional and personal potential and create an intentional, meaningful life that lights them up. In the past, Pin herself felt stuck and lost in her career direction. This painful experience has taught her valuable lessons and insights, and she now shares her experience & knowledge in helping others achieve their own success and unlocking their hidden genius. Pin's coaching is a powerful combination of head and heart, reflection and action and her goal is to help others find their North Star to lead a life with more meaning and purpose. She brings to her clients' experience and expertise gained from multiple global careers in different industries and working with top-tier global firms. Pin is a certified coach with the Jay Shetty Certification School and holds a B.S degree in International Management & Business Chinese and an MBA from the National University of Taiwan.



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