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Did you know that Walt Disney's first company went bankrupt? Instead of giving up he moved to Hollywood with 20 dollars and a suitcase to start a new business. Disney believed in himself and his ideas. It turned out to be a very good risk.

Michael Jordan was cut from his Sophomore Varsity basketball team for being too short. He stuck with the game and ended up one of the best basketball players in the world.

Terry Fox started his Marathon of Hope running across Canada after having one leg amputated due to cancer. He wanted to raise money for cancer research. Terry never finished the run because cancer took his life, yet more than $400 million has been raised for cancer research in his name.

Each of these individuals teaches us that in order to have an amazing life you have to believe in yourself and take extraordinary risks. Turn a deaf ear to the naysayers and go for it.

When taking risks you can start big or small according to your threshold of comfort. Some people take giant leaps and others feel more at ease with baby steps as they build their risk taking muscle. It doesn't matter which category you fall into, just start taking risks.

A part of taking risks is sometimes being placed in a position where you must jump quickly into a situation instead of "thinking about it," for days on end. Hesitation can result in a missed, once in a life time opportunity. Just be sure to apply sound logic.

If you find that you want to take more risks but something is holding you back; or maybe just the thought of taking risks has you shuddering, get to the root of issue. Most likely in your mind, you are holding onto a fear attached to a belief that is limiting and negative. Perhaps you don't even know what is stopping you from taking the risk, you just know every time you want to step out and try something new, you find yourself frozen and rooted in place.

This situation presents a perfect opportunity to examine your beliefs about risks, failure and making mistakes. Also notice and become aware of your beliefs and thoughts about yourself and your abilities. Remember a person may take a risk and make a mistake, but it isn't a failure until he or she decides that it is a failure and starts beating themselves up about it.

It's important to believe in yourself and to take risks. Holding a positive mindset will support, encourage and propel you forward. When you start taking risks, jumping on opportunities and accepting challenges amazing things begin to happen; an amazing life unfolds and at the center of that is an amazing person. That amazing person is you.

It is worth noting that nothing great was ever achieved without risků.food for thought.

Esther Bartkiw is a Certified Core Belief Engineering Practitioner, speaker and author. Visit her website at www.changefromwithin.ca

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