You Miss 100% of the Shots You Don’t Take

Here is what this spontaneous quote by Wayne Gretzky can teach us about risks, failure, and success.

By Jenny Dsouza ~

We miss 100 of chances we dont take 2

The quote "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take" is one that many of us have heard before. It comes from Wayne Gretzky, who was a professional ice hockey player, and it's often used to encourage people to take risks in their lives.

"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
-Wayne Gretzky

In simple terms, it means that if you want to succeed, you have to put yourself out there. You have to take risks and not just play safe all the time. If you do that, then you will fail more often than not. But you will also win often because you are taking more chances than anyone else.

Often, though, we don't take chances because we are afraid to fail. We don't want to be judged by society. For years, through school, we've been taught not to fail. It's been drilled into us that failure is bad, and not an option. However, the truth is far from that. Failure is actually a good thing because it teaches us what not to do in the future.

Failure is the stepping stone to success. You cannot succeed unless you have the experience of failing a few times before. Ask a sportsman or a serial entrepreneur and they will tell you about the times they have failed and the lessons they have learned along the way.

Failure is not a bad thing. Failure makes you stronger and it helps you gain valuable experience. The first step to becoming a successful person is learning how to fail with grace, learn from your mistakes and then move on.

If you've just failed at something and are looking for some motivation, know that you are in good company. You learned a lot from your failure and now it's time to start over again and take another shot.

Here is what you should do if you have failed recently:

  1. Take a deep breath and think about everything that has happened. You will feel better if you take the time to breathe deeply. This helps with stress, anxiety, and the feeling of failure. Now think about all of the reasons why you failed and what you could have done differently to prevent it from happening again.
  2. Write down all of the things that went wrong in a journal or notebook (this is especially helpful if there were multiple issues). Learn from your mistakes so they don't happen again in the future.
  3. Don't be hard on yourself—this is not a reflection of your worth. It's just something that didn't work out this time around so keep going!
  1. Define what failure means to you. Why does the label of failure bother you? Can you redefine failure? What will it look like if you reposition this event in your life?
  2. Ask for help. You don't have to do this alone. Even if you have very few friends or family who understand you, that's okay. Reach out to them and talk to them about your feelings. Even if you feel like you have no one to talk to, get professional help. Therapy is now available online. You don't even have to step out to get help.
  3. Take responsibility for your actions. It's not always other people's fault when things go wrong, sometimes it's just a mistake you made. Accept that, apologize from the heart (if necessary) and take steps to gain back the trust of the people you may have hurt in the process.
  1. Take a break. You need to rest and recharge your batteries so that you can come back stronger than ever. Don't underestimate the power of time off. it can lend an interesting perspective and distance that you may have missed when you are in the midst of things.
  2. Find inspiration again. Just like you are seeking out this article, seek out more resources to do better next time around. Find people who have been successful at what you want to do, learn from them and then take action
You Miss 100% of the Shots you Don't Take - Lifeism

It's important to take risks because, without risk-taking, we can never achieve anything great. The only way you'll ever get better at anything is by doing it over and over again until you're consistently good at it. If you never take any chances with your work or your career, then how will anything ever change for the better?

The more risks you take in life, the more chances your bets have at paying off. If all you do is play it safe and play by the rules, then there's no chance that things will change for you in any meaningful way. You have to be willing to put yourself out there and be vulnerable if you want to see real results in your life.

How to start taking risks

We all have a little fear of failure in our lives. It's there, whether we like it or not. But what if we told you that you could start taking risks even when you're afraid?

What if we told you that it's possible to be afraid and still have fun? What if we told you that it's even possible to feel scared and excited at the same time? That's what we're going to talk about today.

First off, let's define "risk." A risk is something where the outcome isn't known ahead of time. It can be an investment or a new career path—and it can also be something as simple as asking someone out on a date who might say yes (or no). Risking failure means risking disappointment when things don't work out how they should. But risk also means getting closer to success!

When we talk about overcoming the fear of failure, what we really mean is overcoming the fear of disappointment—and letting ourselves get close enough to success so that it feels real, even though it might not pan out exactly as planned.

Risk Aversion

We live in a world of risk aversion. It's all around us, and it can be hard to avoid. From the way we feel about our careers to the way we feel about ourselves, we're encouraged to play it safe.

But there's one area where we're not supposed to be risk-averse: our personal lives. We're supposed to take risks and find love, right? We're supposed to start businesses and pursue our passions—but how exactly do we go about doing that when everything in our society tells us not to? How do we make room for those things that scare us most when everything is telling us that fear should rule our lives?

The answer is simple: We have to stop letting fear rule our lives.

If you want something bad enough, if you believe in yourself enough, then you have the power within yourself to make it happen—even if that means going against societal norms or making mistakes along the way. You deserve happiness (and love) just as much as anyone else does—and no one can tell you otherwise!

Getting out of the rut

It's easy to get stuck in a rut, especially when you're afraid of failure.

When we're afraid to take risks, it's easy to focus on the potential negative outcomes and feel paralyzed by that fear—but there are ways to overcome your fears and start taking some risks!

The first step is recognizing that fear is natural. We all feel it sometimes, and that's okay! It's normal for your heart rate to increase if you're about to make a big career change or go on an interview. But it's not always productive. So, what can we do when our fears get in the way of using our talents?

Challenge yourself. Take on challenges that are bigger than what you're used to doing and see what happens. You'll learn more by trying something new than by staying in your comfort zone forever!

Think about how you can make things easier for yourself if things don't go as planned. If there are multiple ways for something bad to happen (like a failure), think about how you could mitigate those negative outcomes by planning ahead for them. For example: If you're going on an interview, think about how you could handle it if they don't hire you. Will this affect other opportunities in the future? If so, how? How can you use this experience to improve your interviewing skills for next time?

Exercises like these will make you feel more in control of the situation you are in, and it will give you more confidence to take on more risks.

At the end of the day, what the quote is saying is that if you don't even try, you are already failing. If you are already failing, then what is the harm in taking the risk?

The cost of indecision

This is the last point I want to make. But I think it is the most important one. Many times, we think that by delaying a decision or not making a decision we are escaping reality and its outcome. However, it is important to remember that not deciding is also a decision. And as a result, it is also a risk that you are taking without it being your choice. If you are going to take a risk anyway, why not make the decision yourself instead of letting fate handle it?

The cost of indecision is not only that you must deal with the consequences of your choice, but also that you have lost control over your life and let other people or circumstances decide for you.

In conclusion, it is imperative you take risks. Risks that and shots that feel right in the gut. Make decisions that feel right to you. And make as many as possible. Play full out. We have only one life. This is the only chance we've got. Go after what you want with all you've got. And enjoy your life in the process.


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