The other day I saw a notebook for sale with the words “take epic chances” on the cover. But instead of feeling motivated or uplifted by that statement, I felt anxious and like there was just too much pressure. Epic is a loaded word. Can you know your chances are epic before you take them? Is what’s epic to me, epic to you? (Am I over thinking this? Probably.) It was in seeing this that I realised that little chances can be better than big or epic ones, I think.
Some may say “go big or go home” but in choosing small, deliberate actions that are thought through, you might get a result that’s just as good, if not better. The beauty of taking little chances is that you get to test the waters. You get to see what fits and what doesn’t. You get to test and refine and move forward. It’s not going to be as flashy as a big chance, but you’ve also got the ability to change it more easily if it’s not working.
Sometimes big chances are scary to the point where we feel that it’s all or nothing. That you have to make a massive change all at once without even really knowing that it’s what you want. That can mean that instead of taking the chance, as amazing as it could be, we do nothing. We feel a bit paralysed by the enormity of it. Eep!
The beauty of taking little chances is that sometimes we don’t even realise that we’re making them. They are small enough that giving it a go doesn’t feel like a leap, but more like jumping over a small puddle. And the great thing about them is that lots of little chances, taken one-by-one, can add up to doing something big or epic or amazing without needing to do it all at once.
Big chances are awesome too, don’t get me wrong. But it doesn’t have to always be one or the other. Little chances let us try and sometimes they let us know that a big chance would be the right idea after all. With some little chances under our belts, the big ones don’t seem so overwhelming, but more a natural progression.
It’s like learning just about anything. If you start at expert level as a beginner, you’re likely to be overwhelmed and feel like only “naturals” can get this stuff. But the “naturals” started at beginner level and worked their way up. One step at a time. Sometimes as adults we expect that we should already know how to do everything and that learning is for kids. But learning, testing and trying is for all of us. We all start somewhere and that’s cool!
What would you try if you knew that you could take a little chance before a big leap?