Fear of uncertainty and of a possible painful future: it often stops us from accomplishing great things in our lives.
But I think that fear is often crippling because most people don’t understand risk. They might think that they do, but, in actuality, they really don’t. They only understand it in a kind of loosey-goosey way, but not in a deep, experiential way.
Let me let you in on a secret: Look at the most successful people you can think of — Bill Gates, Elon Musk, Warren Buffet… those kinds of people. Do you think they’ve achieved what they’ve achieved based on talent or hard work alone?
Well, sure, talent helps; hard work helps, but those are NOT enough! You also need luck! And, for better or for worse, you need to take your chances. That’s what made these people the successes that they are: it’s risk-taking, with a sprinkle of luck.
So risk shouldn’t be feared. Rather it should be fully understood, and in understanding it, you’ll learn to take calculated risk, thus turning it into a powerful ally that will help you achieve your goals faster.
Today, I want to share 32 quotes that are having the greatest impact on me as I’m sitting down at this very moment and thinking about the concept of risk.
I hope they have as profound an effect on you as they have on me.
1. “You can measure opportunity with the same yardstick that measures the risk involved. They go together.”
– Earl Nightingale
2. “Life is inherently risky. There is only one big risk you should avoid at all costs, and that is the risk of doing nothing.”
– Denis Waitley
3. “When you take risks you learn that there will be times when you succeed and there will be times when you fail, and both are equally important.”
– Ellen DeGeneres
4. “The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision.”
5. “Often the difference between a successful man and a failure is not one’s better abilities or ideas, but the courage that one has to bet on his idea, to take a calculated risk, and to act.”
– Maxwell Maltz
6. “Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.”
– T. S. Eliot
7. “If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.”
– Jim Rohn
8. “Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing.”
– Warren Buffett
9. “Once we believe in ourselves we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit.”
– E. E. Cummings
10. “We are young, but We already know that in life’s great game those who are most unhappy are those who haven’t taken the risk to be happy. And I don’t want to be one of those.”
– Guillaume Musso
11. “The only way to find true happiness is to risk being completely cut open.”
– Chuck Palahniuk
12. “When you genuinely accept the risks, you will be at peace with any outcome.”
– Mark Douglas
13. “A thing appears random only through the incompleteness of our knowledge.”
14. “It is better by noble boldness to run the risk of being subject to half the evils we anticipate than to remain in cowardly listlessness for fear of what might happen.”
15. “The theory of probabilities is at bottom nothing but common sense reduced to calculus.”
– Pierre Laplace
16. “You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. You can’t get there by bus, only by hard work and risk and by not quite knowing what you’re doing. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover will be yourself.”
– Alan Alda
17. “Probability is the intersection of the most rigorous mathematics and the messiest of life.”
– Nassim Taleb
18. “Our lives improve only when we take chances, and the first and most difficult risk we can take is to be honest with ourselves.”
– Walter Anderson
19. “Creative risk-taking is essential to success in any goal where the stakes are high. Thoughtless risks are destructive, of course, but perhaps even more wasteful is thoughtless caution which prompts inaction and promotes failure to seize opportunity.”
– Gary Ryan Blair
20. “What I tell these young people is, the world is not as dangerous as the older generation would like you to believe. Anyone I know who has ever taken a risk and lost a job has ended up getting a better one two years later.”
– Jonathan Kozol
21. “Because if you’re prepared and you know what it takes, it’s not a risk. You just have to figure out how to get there. There is always a way to get there.”
– Mark Cuban
22. “You must accept that you might fail; then, if you do your best and still don’t win, at least you can be satisfied that you’ve tried. If you don’t accept failure as a possibility, you don’t set high goals, you don’t branch out, you don’t try, you don’t take the risk.”
– Rosalynn Carter
23. “When you play it too safe, you’re taking the biggest risk of your life. Time is the only wealth we’re given.”
– Barbara Sher
24. “You have to be able to risk your identity for a bigger future than the present you are living.”
– Fernando Flores
25. “The person who risks nothing does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn and feel and change and grow and love and live.”
– Leo F. Buscaglia
26. “It’s not because things are difficult that we dare not venture. It’s because we dare not venture that they are difficult.”
27. “Yes, risk-taking is inherently failure-prone. Otherwise, it would be called sure-thing-taking.”
– Jim McMahon
28. “People who don’t take risks generally make about two big mistakes a year. People who do take risks generally make about two big mistakes a year.”
– Peter F. Drucker
29. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
– Mark Twain
30. “Don’t refuse to go on an occasional wild goose chase; that’s what wild geese are for.”
– Henry S. Haskins
31. “Risk more than others think is safe. Care more than others think is wise. Dream more than others think is practical. Expect more than others think is possible.”
– Cadet Maxim
32. “Somebody must take a chance. There are monkeys who became men, and the monkeys who didn’t are still jumping around in trees making faces at the monkeys who did.”
– Lincoln Steffens
Now here are a couple of my thoughts on risk in trading that I’ve shared via my Twitter stream.
Here's something that'll raise a lot of eyebrows: Even if you're a consistently profitable trader, you will NEVER become incredibly wealthy by being too conservative. For that to happen, you gotta be wild sometimes, take some daring bets, with size, and be truly ok with failure.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) January 20, 2018
When I trade, I now do it from a place of complete acceptance of the risks involved. That's a big change for someone who used to feel defeated by losses.
There's no secret,
▪️ It's understanding the game, its risks and possibilities
▪️ It's practice
▪️ It's mindfulness
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) March 12, 2018
Fear will make you overestimate risk.
Greed will make you underestimate risk.
Equanimity will make you see things as they are.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) November 18, 2017
The hallmark of a good strategist is the capacity to manage risk and to see far and wide.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) January 30, 2018
Learning to trade changes your life. You acquire a new mental model through which you begin to see and experience the world. Everything becomes a matter of risk to reward, process, good trade/bad trade, etc.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) January 11, 2018
The function of risk management is not only to protect your capital; it's also to preserve your emotional well-being.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) March 9, 2018
Luck can make you profitable without knowledge nor skills. But it's going to be fleeting and rarely repeatable. On the other hand, a proven system with proper risk control and stability of mind will yield you a kind of profitability that is durable and predictable.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) December 22, 2017
Managing your risk is crucial. But too much conservatism in your trading will narrow your trade selection, tether you to what's comfortable, and lessen potential rewards.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) November 30, 2017
New traders enter the trading arena focusing solely on the possibility for huge profits. Pro traders understand that trading carries some significant risks, and instead, they focus on managing that.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) October 17, 2017
Manage your risk appropriately and stay in the game, you'll eventually fall on one of those trades that'll change everything for you.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) February 12, 2018
You can’t always get what u want out of the markets. That's life. But if you take calculated risk each time, you'll be okay.
— Trading Composure (@TradingComposur) October 10, 2017
I hope you found this post insightful.