If I listened to every time I was told to be careful, mind this or that, or beware of x, y, and/or z, I am not sure I would ever leave the house.
If I took on board all of the extra negativity and paranoia of the popular media and press we definitly wouldn’t.
Henry and I would be recluses, wrapped in bubble wrap and glued to the 24 hour news channels. Worrying about all of the terrible things that might happen to us, and all of the horrible people out to get us.
I know it is good to have a healthy caution to danger. It is probably a natural survival instinct. I am feeling a increasingly resistant to the constant messages of risk avoidance and negativity though.
Yes, I do need to be careful on the stairs. But, I don’t want to be reminded every time I use them. Yes, I do need to be careful driving. I cannot control other drivers though.
There is a difference between actual risk, and paranoia. Between knowing something is going to happen, and worrying it might when it probably wont.
I am certainly not going to encourage anyone to do anything dangerous.
I am simply saying
“you know what, it is ok to dismiss negative messages that might
be limiting your decision making process”.
I am surrounded by people telling me what to do, and what not to do with Henry. I just went to write a list and it was ridiculously long so I wont bore you with endless examples. Of course these people mean well. I am grateful that they care. And of course I want Henry to be safe and healthy. It has got me thinking a lot about risk though.
I will protect him where I can. And live in the real world. He will undoubtedly fall over whilst learning to walk though. That is fine. He will get up and try again. That is also a natural instinct. Somewhere inside us is an evolutionary instinct to get up and keep trying. That it is ok to take a bit of a knock to get what we want. And that sometimes we do need the guidance of others to make sure we don’t try and learn to walk whilst on the edge of a cliff, (for an over dramatic example!)
If we are constantly listening to other peoples concerns and fears, where is the room for our own judgement. We are capable of applying our own reason, coming to our own decisions, applying our own care. We can decide what risks we are happy to take. Where our boundaries and comfort zones end and begin. And the more confident we are with our own decision making, the more likely we are to ask for help and advise when we really need it.