Taking risks for happiness

Taking risks for happiness

As some of you may well know, I send out a weekly tip from another website (www.makingchanges.com.au). This week’s tip is, I believe, relevant to those who read this happiness blog and so I’m happy to bring it to you here…

Hello there and welcome to another mailing from making changes. Once again I bring you something based on a personal experience and as has happened so many times before, some lessons learned while playing with my children.

Not that long ago I took my kids to a local playground that had recently been re-built. Not surprisingly, the “new” playground looked very nice and colourful and as a result, was quite attractive on the eye.

My children happily sauntered in to the playground and began to do what most children do relatively naturally and easily…play and have fun! But after a while, it became obvious that something wasn’t quite right; although still playing they appeared bored!

On closer inspection and upon getting a bit more involved myself I realised pretty quickly that although nice and colourful and new and well designed the new playground was…too safe.

Now don’t take this the wrong way…I don’t want my kids to get harmed in any way and I certainly don’t ever encourage them to take unnecessary or inappropriate risks but, that being said, there’s a point at which ‘safe” can equal “boring”. There’s also a point, I believe, at which ‘safe” equals “dangerous” in that over-protection of children can lead to them NOT learning important life skills and as a result, over-protection can provide an obstacle to the development of resilience.

Notably, I think there’re lessons here not just for children but also, for “grown ups”; and that is, taking (appropriate and calculated) risks contributes to success and happiness. In my experience, there’s no doubt that happy and successful people take more risks, after consideration and preparation, than others. As a result, they might actually experience more failures and setbacks BUT they also experience far more happiness and success and excitement and newness!

So this week’s tip is about NOT playing it safe and within the realm of what’s reasonable and appropriate, taking risks for happiness!

PS: check out The Happiness Institute’s coaching and course options at http://www.thehappinessinstitute.com/events/courses.aspx.