“Better Safe than Sorry” Is a Lie

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After my last blog post about planning your escape from your current job, I received an email: “Greg, it sounds great to go after the life you want, but haven’t you ever heard the phrase, better safe than sorry?”

Yes, I’ve heard that expression. (In fact I just read something about it in Bob Proctor’s book, It’s Not About the Money. I don’t believe in coincidences, so let’s talk about it. )

My emailer continued, “I’m, nervous about trying something new and leaving my safe, stable job where I know I have a steady income.”

I totally understand where that guy is coming from. We were taught from an early age that the “safe” thing to do is to get a “good” job at a “good” company with a good salary, health care plan, and sick leave and vacation policy. When you get that, hold on tight and don’t let go.

I get it, and I always tell people that to decrease your risk you should keep your day job while you begin working on your Passionate Purpose. Then, slowly transition to your new thing.

With that in mind, here are the problems I have with the idea of “Better Safe Than Sorry:”

1) It implies that if you play it safe you will never be sorry.

Is that true? I’ve gone the “safe” route a few times where I still regret it to this day. I’m sorry I played it safe. I missed out on some great stuff.

No one on his deathbed ever said, “I didn’t really enjoy my work. I never went after what I really wanted. Maybe I could have lived the extraordinary life of my dreams. But, better safe than sorry!”

Don’t you want more than a job you barely tolerate because you think you won’t get fired?

2) Is any job really “safe” anymore?

During the 2008 recession, the United States lost 8.7 million jobs. How many of the people who were let go thought their jobs were safe? I thought mine was. Boy, was I wrong. How about you?

But, Greg, the recession is over. “Good” jobs are safe again. Really? Hmm…here’s a report from CNBC:

“In the first four months of the year, employers said they would hand out 250,061 pink slips. That is the highest total for the January-to-April period since 2009.”

I’m not trying to be a Debbie Downer. I’m a glass is half full kinda guy. But, I’m also realistic. You could lose your job today. There is no safe job anymore (unless you work for the government – then you’re more likely to die than be fired). So does it make sense to stay in a job you don’t like, or even hate, because – better safe than sorry?

I think it’s safer to follow your passionate purpose. You will enjoy your work and life more right away. Because you love what you do, you’ll keep getting better at it and improve your chances to generate more income regardless of what’s happening with our economy.

And you’ll have fewer regrets.

Questions:

  • Are you fulfilling your Passionate Purpose with your current job?
  • Are you excited to get out of bed every morning?
  • Do you know that your life counts and that you matter?
  • Are you a success because you’re doing well financially, even if you don’t like your job?
  • Or, does your success come from using the gifts you were born with to make the most out of the purpose you were created for?
  • Is it time to start working on your Passionate Purpose today and create a plan to transition away from your current “safe” job?

Let’s GO!

(I now offer one to one coaching and an online coaching program for various budgets. Click here for more details.)

Being Assertive Right Away Pays Off Big Time

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I can’t believe what that guy said to me.
Wait until you hear what our vendor just did.
That customer wastes so much of my time, I wonder if he’s even worth it.

Do you ever say things like that? Why don’t you do something to stop these problems from happening again and again?

Well, the customer is always right. I don’t want to be difficult, or rude, or impolite. I was raised to be nice to people.

I get all that, but are you confusing being nice with being a doormat?

You can be polite and nice while still being assertive. When you do, your life will get so much easier. People will respect you more – even the people who are mistreating you – and you will start to be treated preferentially.

When I was in 7th grade I got into 13 fights. I didn’t start any of them. I was a short, scrawny kid with braces, glasses and acne. I looked like I had a sign on me saying, “Please pick on me.” The bullies did.

I didn’t win any of the fights. But I never fought the same kid twice because I stood up for myself. When someone started to hit me, I hit him back. But I didn’t just hit him back, I went CRAZY! I yelled, screamed, punched, scratched, kicked and did whatever I could to let him know I was not an easy target. He might win, but he would be licking some wounds in the victory circle.

It took a while for word to get around the bully clique, but after 13 fights no one ever picked on me again. The bullies didn’t become my friends, but they respected me.

Greg, um, I don’t think it’s good advice to beat people up.

I’m not saying it’s time to beat up everyone who mistreats you. But the idea that you have to take people’s garbage and smile is ridiculous. Don’t be aggressive, be assertive.

When someone is speaking rudely to you kindly, but firmly, let them know you’ll be happy to speak with them when they’re calmer and can be civil.

When your vendor isn’t living up to the contract, politely but firmly remind them of the details and hold them to it – or change vendors.

When a customer is more pain than he’s worth, let him know that while you appreciate his business, it seems he isn’t happy with what you offer and it’s time he takes that business somewhere else.

Start being assertive right away and watch how things change. You will end up being happier, more productive, and probably make more money by doing away with so many problems. You’ll also be treated better by everyone you interact with.

Try it and tell me how it goes.

Too Comfortable?

I like being comfortable, don’t you? Comfy chair, comfy car, comfy job, comfy relationships, comfy routine – who doesn’t like comfy? But what if your comfort level is stopping you from becoming great? What if it’s stopping you from doing great things?

Hey, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – right? Well, if you feel like comfy is “good enough,” then you’re done.

But doesn’t that mean you’ve stopped improving? Isn’t it fun to keep working at making everything better?What might you miss out on because you’re comfy the way things are?

What could your career be like?

What could your marriage become?

What kind of life could you create?

If we get too comfy the way things are, we will never know. It’s really your decision, and neither choice is “wrong.”

Are you comfy and done trying to make things better? That can be a fine life.

Or are you comfy but willing to keep improving things for you and those you care about? That could be a whole different type of life.

Which do you choose?