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  • Writer's pictureJill Brocklehurst

Real and Apparent Risk

“There is a place in the mentality - in the heights of its greatest realizations - where it throws itself with complete abandonment into the centre of the universe” (Ernest Holmes ~ The Science of Mind)

This week, I am moved to expand on a post written by Seth Godin on April 13th, 2023. After receiving feedback from a meditation workshop we hosted for a large company in town, I am curious as to how our society deals with risk.

Let me share Seth’s thoughts: “Rollercoasters are one of the safest ways to travel (they end up where they begin, but that’s a different story). People pay to ride on them because they feel risky, even if they’re not.

“Air travel is really safe, and the airlines work overtime to also reduce the perception of risk as well. That’s why turbulence is so jarring – it’s not actually risky, but it breaks the facade.

“On the other hand, we regularly engage in activities and behaviours that are risky without perceiving the risk. The cigarette companies worked hard to make smoking feel macho, sophisticated and part of the crowd at the same time that they seduced people into feeling like they weren’t taking a risk with their health.

“The most resilient path in most activities is to offer perceived risk to people who seek risk, while also creating resilient systems that aren’t actually risky. Because dancing with perceived risk creates growth, connection and emotional resonance, whereas actual risk leads to outcomes we don’t want.”

Our centre aspires, in the work that we do, to invite individuals to lean into perceived risk. Brené Brown calls this “vulnerability”. When on the edge of what feels like life-threatening engagement with others, the truth is, we are totally safe.

It can seem so weird to be in this place, because the brain is sent signals of danger, urging us to run away, fight or freeze, and yet the reality is that the experience is benign. As we continue to dive into this body of work, what we discover is that resilience is developed. This skill transfers to all our interrelations.

Risk is a hard pill to swallow, I get it. I have been shaking in my boots time and time again, wondering why the heck I have come to the edge in conversation with this or that person. But the resulting experience, the after effect, is a life that is exponentially better in every way. Now when I get to that place, I remind myself, “Hold on Jill, you have been here before. You know this is worth it, and once the storm passes and the sun breaks through the clouds, the day is more glorious than you ever imagined”.

I don’t have much more to say on this subject except - trust the process. Like Seth wrote, “Dancing with perceived risk creates growth, connection and emotional resonance.”

My experience is, that people who are inspired through this kind of personal journey feel empowered. Empowered people make better decisions for themselves and the world.

This is the journey I love. I invite you to join in, any time. I promise, you are safe.

Oh, and here is a great song about Risk by Amy Bishop, one of my favourite musicians from Calgary, Alberta... enjoy:

~ This week, think and write about a desire you have… travel, relationship, better job… The person you are today doesn’t have that yet because you haven’t become the person you need to be that does have that thing.

~ Find a course, a group, a workshop that feels a little uncomfortable; a place that challenges you to grow in any way. Sign up, lean in and know, as you do this work, you are on the path to realize your every desire.

~ Hey, perhaps you can start by joining us for our Earth Day Workshop, on Saturday, April 22nd! Honour The Earth from both the outer and the inner landscape. You will go home feeling a little more ‘you’… in a good way, for sure

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