How Taking Risks Improves Your Business: Tips for Entrepreneurs

OK ladies, buckle your seatbelts, because 2015 is all about courage and currency — that is, the relationship between what you choose and what you value. Let’s start by talking about currency.

I was recently in a training session where the facilitator kept pressing us to choose our No. 1 value. “Only one?!” everyone asked. ”Yep. Just one.” She had us sit with a partner and write out our top five, and then used a rapid-fire sparring method to get us each to our top pick.

What I discovered is that my most-valued currency is freedom, and I will choose it above all else. It’s why I’m an activist and an entrepreneur. It’s why I teach people how to make money and keep their autonomy. Please know — the two are not mutually exclusive. Nor are they the same.

So why is freedom so important to me? I don’t want anyone else to be the boss of me. Sure, I can surrender to my amazing team who consistently guide and teach me, or my beloved husband when it’s his weekend in charge of date night, but at my core, I have designed my life in a way that reflects my highest calling and not someone else’s vision for me.

That freedom has moved me to spend many years climbing the ladder in the corporate world. I’ve navigated the complexities of the nonprofit sector in support of organizations and movements I truly valued, and I’ve traveled the world as a performing artist, transformational speaker, and coach. With each leap, I had to believe that I could create my own reality. I had to embrace my agency and choose to live according to my most deeply held values.

And what has enabled me to do all of that? Good, old-fashioned courage.

We talk a lot about courage in the entrepreneurial space, but we don’t really talk about what courage is.

Courage is choosing boldly and unapologetically. Most of us don’t want to be uncomfortable, we don’t want to piss people off, we don’t want to do the hard thing, and we don’t want to take responsibility for what we have or don’t have — especially when it comes to handling our business.

But happiness is a choice. Clarity is a choice. Progress is a choice. How willing are you to choose boldly and unapologetically? When you embrace courage as a practice, you own your choices. Take the quiz below to see just how courageous you’re willing to be in 2015.

And when you own your choices, you get to evaluate whether or not they are giving you the results you want. And if not … make a different choice.

The Relationship Between Courage and Currency
Ideally, currency — what we value — governs how we make decisions. But in reality, many other things influence this, especially other people’s opinions.

Courage needs incentive. If you are braving the storm, it better be for a damn good reason. Hence the question: What do you value?

I value freedom because I want the right to be the shaper of my own destiny.

So I make choices about my life and my business that enable me to have more freedom, and I’m willing to go to the wall for my own liberation.

When I ask people what they value, money is often the go-to answer. But dig deeper here: What does money buy you? What does having money enable you to express? What does having money enable you to achieve? How will more money contribute to your personal and professional life? And what other currencies are important to you?

Health is a currency. Love is a currency. Authentic relationships and respect are currencies.

Once you’ve come up with your list, you can create your own pecking order and determine your No. 1 currency. Then evaluate if your current choices are in alignment with what you value.

The breakthrough opportunity of currency is the unwavering commitment to have more of what you really value in your life and in your business.

TAKE THE QUIZ: When it comes to handling your business, how courageous are you willing to be in 2015?

1. As you look at your personal and professional life, how often do you follow your own instincts?   

a. Not at all      

b. Sometimes  

c. Often           

d. All the time

2. When you have to make tough decisions, what do you do?

a. I avoid making them.

b. I have someone decide for me.

c. I ask for a lot of advice from others.           

d. I go within and consult my own wisdom.

3.  When you look at your emotions over the course of a given week, how often do you find yourself feeling afraid?

a. All the time

b. Often    

c. Sometimes

d. Seldom                        

4. When you feel afraid, how often do you know what the source of the fear is?

a. Never          

b. Sometimes     

c. Often

d. All the time

5. When you feel afraid, what do you typically do?

a. Ignore it       

b. Push it aside

c. Rationalize it   

d. Confront and seek to understand it

6.  Think of old stories, habits, or thought patterns you’d love to get rid of in 2015. How committed are you about doing what it takes to release them?

a. No desire to change

b. Ambivalent

c. Adamant

d. Change is non-negotiable

7.  What are you choosing this year that is different from how you chose to handle your business in 2014? How confident are you that you will be able to honor your new choices?

a. Not confident at all

b. Not sure

c. Pretty confident

d. Certain

8.  When you are making big and important changes, how often do you set yourself up for success?

a. Never

b. Sometimes

c. Often

d. All the time

9.  Are you someone who asks for support?

a. No

b. Yes

10. If so, please rank the quality of the support you usually receive:            

a. Poor

b. OK

c. Good

d. Excellent

Scoring: Give yourself one point for every “a,” two points for every “b,” three points for every “c,” and four points for every “d.”

Score Range 30 to 38: Congratulations! You are digging in and doing the work! Keep taking bold action in honor of the personal and professional life you want to have.

Score Range 22 to 30: You are on the edge and have an awesome opportunity to keep leaning into this conversation both personally and professionally! Where could you summon even more courage?

Score Range 10 to 21: You’ve got a golden opportunity to look at your current choices and determine if they are giving you what you want in your life and in your business.

Rha Goddess is a member of the DailyWorth Connect program. Read more about the program here.

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