After 6 years of coaching alone, I was ready to take a risk. I was ready to hire someone to join my community as a JV coach. 

And I was scared.

I was scared to bring someone into the world I had worked so hard to build. I worried they wouldn’t fit my coaching style. Or that we would argue in front of the team. I was terrified of making a bad decision.

But I was more scared of not taking the risk.

Does something scare you as a coach? 

Honestly, I HOPE something scares you. I hope you are taking on a challenge this year that pushes you out of your comfort zone and into a new level of growth and success. Because if nothing scares you about your coaching right now, then I wonder if you’re truly challenging yourself. I believe it’s in the challenge that we grow.

Ok, now that’s easy to say. Yeah, yeah, I know I’ll grow when I come out the other side of a challenge, but taking the risk is scary! That’s the point. And I know so many coaches who say they want to do the scary thing, but ultimately have an excuse that gets in their way. “I don’t know if it’ll work.” “What if I make a mistake?” “I could be wrong, what if my instinct is way off?”

Maybe you want to take a traditional pom team and compete hip hop this year, or you want to completely push the boundaries of costume design. That’s great! I say go for it. But if you haven’t done whatever scares you yet, why? What’s in your way?

Here’s a little gut check for you…

What’s in your way, is most likely, YOU. Because when we consider taking a big risk, we usually want to know it’ll work before we take the leap.

It’s like the old-school version of asking someone out in middle school with the little check boxes “Yes” “No” “Maybe” at the bottom. You don’t want to ask out your crush unless you know he or she will say yes.

Why are we so afraid to take a risk when we don’t know the outcome? Because the unknown is terrifying. Personally, I hate the unknown. I’m a planner to my core. I want to know what’s coming. I want to know what will succeed and that my efforts will be worth it.

But the only way to know what’s coming, is to stay safe. To stay in your comfort zone. And nothing good will come of that.

You may believe you can’t act unless you know it’ll work. “I want to try a unique opening for my routine” or “I want to change the leadership structure on my team” but you believe you can’t unless you know it’ll work. It’s scary to take such big risk. It could blow up in your face.

But it could also be the first step towards something amazing that you didn’t even know to dream about.

If you believe that you can’t take the action you are scared of unless you know exactly where you are headed, I challenge you to think about a new way of approaching risk.

The only way to make progress towards a scary goal, the only way to take a big risk, is to take imperfect action towards the first step. Not the last step. The FIRST step. 

That’s all it is. Take some action, any action, towards your big scary goal. You don’t have to know the end result to take that first risky action. Just step.

Martin Luther King Jr. has a wonderful quote that has become a personal mantra for me in my recent years of taking big risks and pushing myself. I hope it will encourage you to take your first step as well:

You don’t have to know if the theme for your pom routine will work, or if your team will like the new team bonding idea. Just take the first step in faith. Over analyzing will only leave you paralyzed and then nothing changes. Take the first step. Try it. Just start.

The alternative is for everything to stay the same. So if you want your team to reach new heights this year, you have to do something you’ve never done before. Take the risk.

What are you scared of?

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