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When most people think about setting their goals and things that they want to accomplish, they often freak out and give up on those goals because of the worst-case scenario.

What is the worst that can happen?

Is it failing at your goal? Losing an investment? Failing at your business venture and going back to work for someone else?

Most people think those ARE the worst-case scenarios when they go after their dreams.

On this episode, I want to share why I don’t think failing or hurting yourself in the process of going after your goal is the worst-case thing that can happen to you, by far.

Don’t miss this motivating and inspiring look at worst-case scenarios when setting and going after your goals.

What you will discover

  • The process for evaluating any worst-case scenario.
  • Why failing at what you’re going after is not the worst thing that can happen to you.
  • The REAL worst-case scenario of setting and going after your goals.

Featured on the show

Episode Transcript

Welcome to The Life Coach School podcast, where it’s all about real clients, real problems, and real coaching. And now your host, Master Coach Instructor, Brooke Castillo.

Well, hello, hello my friends. How are you guys? Really, how are you? I'm great. Amazing, fantastic. It's a gorgeous day, I just found a dog sitter right around the corner from me, who has a huge house and a huge yard. If you love your dogs as much as I love my dogs, you will know that this is like finding a husband. It's like finding the most amazing nanny or babysitter. It's heaven. So today is a good day.

We are going to Utah in December to go skiing, and it like, takes a whole crew to like take care of us while we're gone. Chris and I are going before the kids, we have to have someone housesit, keep an eye on thing, someone to watch the dogs. I got a cool room at the Stein Eriksen. Stoked.

We're trying to plan one other vacation during that time, because we're crazy. We like to travel when everyone else does. One of the women that works with me, Bev Erin, told me about the Dominican Republic and so I'm looking into that too. It's either that or Whistler. So we're either going to be really cold or really warm. So that's what I have on my mind today.

In addition, I have on my mind the worst-case scenario. So that sounds super fun, right? You guys want to talk about that? So here's what I want to talk about. I want to give you a way of looking at this that is motivating and inspiring.

So when you think about your dreams, when you think about the things you want to accomplish, let's just say in 2018, one of the things we're doing in Scholars right now is creating an impossible goal for ourselves and going through the process of trying to attain an impossible goal. Failing our way, all the way to impossible, and there's a process that I applied to myself last year that was incredibly effective, that I'm teaching in Scholars. But one of the things that we ask is when you set a big goal for yourself, a lot of people get freaked out and decide they don't want to set goals because of the worst-case scenario. They're afraid of taking the risk, of hurting themselves, of failing.

And so I have and want you to go through this process of really truly evaluating the worst-case scenario. Now, I've talked about the worst thing that can happen is a feeling, and that is true. Because even if you lose all your money, even if you lose your job, even if you lose your reputation, all of those things, the only reason they are a problem is because of what we make them mean and then how we feel, and that is really important for the first phase of understanding the worst-case scenario.

So when you answer the question, what's the worst that can happen, when you answer this question, you may come up with something like this. This is what most people say. They imagine a dream they would love to accomplish. Maybe they want to quit their job and become a coach, or start a business, maybe they want to move across the country, maybe they want to get married. And as they imagine the risk, they think about the worst-case scenario. So they quit their job and start a business and they don't make any money.

The worst-case scenario there is that they're out of a job that made them a good salary. They're out the money they invested to start the business, and they feel shame and embarrassed because they haven't got any clients. Most students tell me that is the worst-case scenario, and what I often say is, "Well, worst-case scenario, you should just go back to a job and you're out some money because of the money you invested in the business, and you're out the money that you didn't make. Is that worth it for you to take the chance on your dreams?" Sometimes they'll say yes, sometimes they'll say no.

But then I tell them, that isn't the worst-case scenario, my friends. The worst-case scenario is not that you go after your dream and fail. That is not the worst-case scenario. And so many of you are living your life based on that being it. In fact, what I would call that scenario is just the beginning, right? So you quit your job and started a business and didn't make any money. Welcome to the first month, two months, three months, maybe even year, of your own business. That's just the beginning. That's not failure, that's not the worst-case scenario, that's just the start.

So even if they decide to go back and get a job, they simply end up where they started, at a job, making salary. So really, in essence, the worst that can happen in their mind is already happening. But like I said, I don't think that's the worst that can happen. Here's what I think is the worst that can happen, is that they never try.

What they aren't thinking about, what you guys aren't thinking about when you evaluate your worst-case scenario is the lost opportunity of actually making your dreams come true. The worst that can happen in my mind is they could have been very successful in their new business, helped many people, made lots of money, contributed to their family. But they never tried. They could have made six figures, love their life, and their contribution, and they will never know it. That is the worst-case scenario. The worst that can happen is that they lose out on the 600K they could have made over the next six years. That's the worst-case scenario.

So it's not like if you don't take action you're reducing your risk of failure. You're just failing ahead of time. I think the riskiest thing you can ever do is to never give your human life value and contribution a chance. Let me give you an example of this in my coaching business. Last year I told my CFO that the worst that could happen if I change my business model and decided to do Self-Coaching Scholars, I told him the worst that could happen was that I just go back to my old business model, which was pretty great.

I've told this before, like, I talked to him, I said, "Mark, dude, the worst-case scenario is this doesn't work and I come back to doing this thing that I love. That's not a worst-case scenario. That's not a problem. It's a beautiful thing. I can just either keep doing it or I can go after this other thing and if that doesn't work then I can just do it anyway." And I thought, the worst that can happen is what I'm doing right now, but I was wrong about that. I was wrong about that.

What I realized one year later is that the worst that could have happened is not changing my business model. I would have lost out on doubling my revenue. Six people would not have jobs that they currently have with me. Dozens of people who have changed their life through Scholars might not have made those changes in overdrinking, eating, money, their business, and their emotional lives.

I see now that that is the worst-case scenario. That would have been a tragedy much worse than it not working out. So when you are making decisions, you can't just consider what will happen if it doesn't work out. You have to consider what you're losing out on if it does. Boom.

So when you're going to make a decision, most of you make the decision like this, and this is what I did too. I said, I can either keep doing what I'm doing, or I can try and change my business model. If I keep doing what I'm doing, I'm safe, there's no risk. And if I try and change my business model, I'm taking a big risk because I could fail. That is inaccurate, my friends. That is not true.

Here's what it really is. You have to examine what if I kill it at this business, what if it works, what if all my dreams come true? The worst-case scenario is that you don't give yourself that chance. The worst-case scenario is that you don't even try. The worst-case scenario my friends, is that you could have, and you didn't. How much is that costing you?

I was talking to one of my students, and she was talking about taking some money out of her savings and investing it in her business. And she said, "The worst-case scenario is that I lose all that money." And I said, "Nope, the worst-case scenario is that you could have quadrupled it and you didn't give yourself a chance. That's way worse than losing it." Right? If you're going to take ten thousand out, the worst-case scenario isn't that you lose ten thousand dollars. The worst-case scenario is that you leave that ten thousand dollars in and cost yourself fifty thousand dollars that you could have created with that money as an investment.

Give yourself the benefit of the doubt. Explore what the cost will be when you don't even give yourself the opportunity to do it, to try it. I want you to think about all the successful people that you admire. The worst-case scenario of them being too afraid to go after their dreams, of them not risking, of them not running up their credit cards to start their business in a garage, for them not being willing to write that book and be criticized. The worst-case scenario is that they wouldn't have shown up in their life. They wouldn't have created all the amazing value that they've created.

So let's think about it. Let's say you go all in on yourself, let's say that you put money on black for you, and you invest that money in that business and that business doesn’t work. Is that worse than never having tried? That is a question that I want you to really explore. Because I think that you and I both know that we're never going to regret the effort that we put in to chasing our dreams. We are never going to hold that against us, and if we do, shame on us.

Dude, there are so many things I have done and tried that I didn't do well and that didn't succeed, but I'll tell you what, I grabbed every lesson I could from those experiences and I'm now using those lessons to succeed in my life. And I'm going to fail so many more times, I'm going to set so many more impossible goals because I start thinking, "Wait a minute, what if I have the potential to create a business that could make a hundred million dollars and I don't try to do that?" Where is the failure there? To me, the failure is in not even having tried, and if I go for it and I go all in and I take care of my mind and myself and my family and my priorities as I'm doing that, I promise myself I will never beat myself up for doing that.

Right? I will never hold that against myself. I'll be like, "Hell yeah girl, you went and you tried and you slayed and sometimes you hit it and sometimes you didn't, and I'm all in. I got your back on this", and I'm not going to have my back when I sit afraid of trying, afraid of going out there, afraid of putting myself in front of the world, because you know what you guys, it just might work. You just might create the exact life that you want. You just might make all that money that you want to make. You just might influence all the people you want to influence if you're willing to go all in.

And are you willing to risk that? Are you willing to be so afraid that you don't give yourself that opportunity? My friends, that is the worst-case scenario, and don't let your life be the worst-case scenario. That's all I got for you today, have a great week everyone. Bye-bye.

Hey, if you enjoy listening to this podcast, you have to come check out Self-Coaching Scholars. It's my monthly coaching program where we take all this material and we apply it. We take it to the next level and we study it. Join me over at the Make sure you type in the I'd love to have you join me in Self-Coaching Scholars. See you there.

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