What is worth any risk to you?

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Is there anything in your life that you’d be willing to pursue, even if you knew the chances were great that you would fail?

Too often, we look for the easy road — what’s guaranteed to put money in our pockets? What’s guaranteed to leave us safe and secure at the end of the day? These aren’t bad questions to ask, but when they become the only questions, we fail to recognize the potential for accomplishing incredible feats that reside within each and every one of us.

When we look at our futures and ask ourselves, “What do I really want my life to mean?” the answer won’t often come in a secure paycheque or a paid-off home. What we really dream of accomplishing are the nearly impossible feats: climbing a mountain, becoming the president, solving global climate crisis, building up a business empire, or even starting our own community where people can flourish and thrive.

These feats all seem so impossible, that most people will never start on any of them, but I want to let you in on a secret.

That impossible dream you’ve had can be accomplished with merely ten seconds of outrageous courage.

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Getting Ready To Leap

Before we jump to those crucial ten seconds, possibly months or years in the future, let’s look first at the path to getting there. What will it take to get you ready for that leap of faith?

For every goal or project, there is a lengthy period of hard work. This period can be broken down into several stages.

Developing Skills

You need to start by making yourself ready for the challenge. If you want to climb a mountain, you need to start by building up your body’s muscles. Once you’re strong enough, you can begin practicing climbing in a course, and you can take larger and larger challenges as you become ready for them.


This stage isn’t about your dream nearly as much as it is about you, and that makes it even more valuable. If you walk away after this stage, you’ll walk away a more capable individual, and much closer to your dream than ever before.

Making a Game Plan

This is when your dream starts to come into focus. The mountain is still far off, but now you can see the road to getting there. How long do you need your endurance to last for? How much strength do you really need? What must you be prepared for if things go poorly?

This game plan is the real hard work, because every need you identify, you also need to meet. If, instead of climbing a mountain, you’re trying to start a business, these needs can come in the form of identifying what sort of team you need to build, what your initial product will cost in terms of development, expenses, and so on.

You might start getting nervous here, but remember — all of this is just work. There’s no risk involved just yet, not really. All you’re doing is laying out the groundwork of what you want to do, and how you can get there.

The Ten Seconds That Make It All Possible

With your game plan laid out, the next period of time will be filling out that game plan. You’re not on the mountain yet, but you’re gathering your gear, finishing your training, and driving up to base camp.

Your ten seconds are coming — and you’ll be ready for them.

The morning of your climb, you’ll look up at the mountain, and you have to decide, “Do I move forward, or quit now?” And in that moment, you’ll have ten seconds to think about all of the work you’ve put in over the past several months.

I know that when you’re faced with that choice, you’ll start your climb. The true courage is in the decision to trust your preparation, to trust in your hard work, and feel confident that you are ready for the challenge ahead.

A Real Ten Second Moment

Shannon Graham, legendary entrepreneurial coach and mentor, proved the merit of those ten seconds. Homeless and destitute, he put all of his remaining funds into a plan to use his talents at helping others to turn his life around, but when his first client showed up, he almost walked away, and almost lost his chance at the success he’s been so lucky to live out…

What better way to hear a story than from the person who lived it? Check out our interview with Shannon Graham below, and learn about HIS ten seconds, and how he used them to open the door to his future.

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