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MENTAL TOUGHNESS

3 Sustainable Ways to Increase Your Risk Appetite

Discomfort is the disguise of growth.

Photo by Andrej Lišakov on Unsplash

Our mind is hard to train because we are creatures of habit. It takes time to learn new skills. Similarly, resilience is a powerful muscle that takes diligence and practice to develop.

Because of my upbringing, I had a crazy supportive childhood. The crazy where parents hand out everything to you, and all you have to do is follow the path laid for you with minimal risk.

But the world in adulthood is less scenic than in childhood.

Once I found that an action mindset is what separates the few remarkable minds from the mediocre crowd, I started prioritising how to become more process-focussed to boost my risk appetite.

Here are three ways I train my resilience muscle to increase my risk appetite. If you follow them, you’ll become an adept opportunist too.

#1. Discomfort is the disguise of growth.

Proving yourself wrong is surprisingly a soothing feeling. It is way more magical than proving the whole world wrong.

The momentum carries you forward when you extend your potential by tackling even the tiniest magnitude of fear.

My writing journey started similarly. In my Data Scientist Nanodegree online course at Udacity, a project required the submission of a blog post. It was mandatory to create a blog to pass the program.

I had no prior experience in publishing. But I had to create a blog to complete the online course for my career growth.

And the rest is history. You are reading my 346th article since I published my first one in 2018.

Growth often comes with a disguise of discomfort.

#2. Become obsessed with lifelong learning.

If you do not leave your comfort zone, life will force you to do it anyway. Why not take it as an opportunity to get ahead earlier?

A lifelong learning mentality proves our brain never stops evolving as long we’re breathing.

It means your brain has changed since you started reading this article. The scientific term for this nature is neuroplasticity.

Once you follow the lifelong learning mindset, you’ll see every risk as an opportunity to grow.

It is hard to flip every obstacle in your favour. But with the right mindset, you’ll be an effective opportunist — and an inspiration to your fellow mates.

#3. Train your resilience muscle.

Repeating the same mistake twice is an act of negligence that should not go unnoticed.

I learned this lesson when my dad roasted me for folding the mosquito net wrong, even when he taught me the right way like a million times.

By learning from our mistakes, we reduce the margin of error.

Since we can determine how much error is acceptable from experience and past performances, it is evident to become less inaccurate with time.

Journaling is a great way to document your lessons, learnings and how you can refine your strategy the next time you face a similar problem.

Final words

Resilience is not a trait we are born with. It is a skill we build with practice, persistence and patience.

If you’re the youngest sibling like me and had a very supportive childhood, the chances are you’ll have to learn to take risks on your own.

Lifelong learning is the first pillar of the journey, which starts a domino effect.

By seeking discomfort and turning it into a lesson to remember, you can train your resilience muscle just like any other mental ability.

Deliberate practice is the key. And as David Goggins says about the motivation from negativity:

“Tell the truth about the real reasons for your limitations and you will turn that negativity, which is real, into jet fuel. Those odds stacked against you will become a damn runway!”

Create positive memories from your experiences, and they will keep giving you headstarts even when you don’t need them.

Here is a recap for your memory:

  1. Seek discomfort because outperforming yourself is the best gift you’ll give to your mind.
  2. Become an opportunist by becoming a lifelong learner.
  3. We are not born with resilience. It is a skill that requires practice, like any other mental ability.

If you want to receive more stories like this, my lifelong learning newsletter is for you.

Sanjeev is a mentor, writer, and fitness enthusiast from India. He writes about lifelong learning, personal growth, and positive psychology. When he’s not engaging with students in solving their doubts or busy writing, he’s sweating either in a workout, PC gaming or playing 8-ball pool. You can also find him on Twitter.

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Sanjeev Yadav

Sanjeev Yadav

Writer • Mentor • Recovering Shopaholic • IITR 2019 • ✍🏼 Personal Growth, Positive Psychology & Lifelong Learning• IG: sanjeevai • List: sanjeevai.ck.page