The Price of Settling

by Deborah on December 21, 2009

Do you think of yourself as a risk-taker?  And if so, what kind of risk taker are you?  Are you “high risk”, eg, willing to jump in with both feet confident all will work out.  Or are you a moderate risktaker – who gathers information and weighs the pros and cons and then makes a positive choice not knowing for sure what the outcome will be, but having some sense of what the options will be. 

To my mind risk-taking is the opposite of “settling” which often means accepting what is until hopefully something better comes along.  Settling in your career choice can provide a sense of personal satisfaction and we all know about the value of “trade-offs.”  First there is the regular paycheck and maybe there are some other benefits, such as health insurance or a pension fund.  And don’t forget those personal days and/or vacation and sick days.  They all add up to keeping us in a job sometimes when we’re ready to take a risk.

Consider the following “costs” of settling for less than what you know is possible, or where the risk-taking might take you.

Sponataneity – if you’re focusing all your energy on fitting in one box all the time (and the fit is a little too tight) you become satisfied with the status quo and are less able to respond to what’s outside the box.

Confidence – this can increase or decrease depending on your circumstances.  If you’re able to use your knowledge and expertise it will increase, but if you’re constantly frustrated by not being able to do more it will most likely decrease.

Connections – you can lose  your valuable connections if you’re not in touch with with a particular network  you value. The energy and enthusiasmthat comes from others needs to be nurtured or they’ll be lost.

So, the price of “settling” needs to be weighed by asking yourself? Am I settling?  Are the “trade-offs” worth it?  And if you were to take a risk, what kind of a risk-taker are you?

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