Becoming a risk taker

One of the ten attributes of the IB learner profile is being risk taker, we are encouraged to teach our students in order to become more and more risk takers throughout their lives.   The IB defines being a risk taker, “We approach uncertainty with forethought and determination; we work independently and cooperatively to explore new ideas and innovative strategies. We are resourceful and resilient in the face of challenges and change.”

But the word risk can actually make us doubt and be afraid of trying, it faces us with adversity, the unknown, and that can be a really difficult challenge in today’s world.   I was browsing through the news this morning when I came up with a fantastic article written by Jill Griffin for Forbes magazine, titled “To Have A Great Career, Be A Risk Taker”. (1) Griffin states that every time we make a decision, we are taking risks; thus, we have to teach and practice the art of risk taking.   “The more you practice taking risks, the more comfortable you will become with the emotional discomfort that can accompany it.”

As educators, parents, teachers or any other role we might be playing, it is our responsibility to show our mentees how to take risks and learn from our decisions.   Take a three year old, for example, we have to let them decide if they should wear option a or b, once they do, have them stick to that decision even if it was not the best one possible and we know they would have been better off and more comfortable with the other.   These are the small decisiones we should be having them face in order to learn how to make better decisions.   Will they always be the right ones?   No, probably not, but we have to show them that making risks involves making mistakes and having the opportunity to learn from them in order to grow as persons. 

As mentors we have to become risk takers ourselves and  provide them with opportunities to practice and become more confident in taking risks.   As Griffin states “Thinking about your style toward risk-taking can lead to better self-understanding.” And isn’t that the ultimate challenge we want for our students and children?  A better understanding of themselves to become more confident and thus enjoy life even better.

Let’s practice making healthy decisions as a lifestyle in order to help our children learn by seeing and thus start taking risks in order to fulfill their best version in the world.

Miss Annette Muench
School Principal 
Colegio Lomas Hill

Image by Envato


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