Risk.

I wish that Grannymar had made a typo and the topic was risque rather than risk. Imagine if I had got it over the phone from her instead of reading it on the list! I would have gone to town with the topic.

Since that option is not available, I shall try and expound on the official topic of Risk.

Whenever we take any action with an outcome in mind, there are four possible outcomes. We get exactly what we hope for, we get more/better than what we hope for; we get less/worse than we hope for and finally something totally different from, even opposite of what we hope for. So, despite being capable of taking the action, there is always an element of uncertainty in the outcome and this is what we call risk. Most actions that we take however, are taken spontaneously without thinking too much about it and when that results in an unexpected outcome, is when we start wondering about risks.

My submission therefore is that risk is ever present in every action that we take and that it is nothing extraordinary to warrant a dissertation. Just getting out of the bed in the morning is a risky business. One can get caught in the folds of the sheets and trip and fall. Does one therefore not get out of the bed? Or does one never cross a road?

The big ticket risks are the ones that should cause us to pause and reflect before acting. Like marriage for instance! I can’t think of a bigger gamble than that in one’s life. Who better to write about it than Ghalib?

क़ैदे-हयात, बंदे-ग़म अस्ल में दोनों एक हैं,
मौत से पहले आदमी ग़म से निजात पाये क्यों?

Translation:

The prison of life and the bondage of grief are one and the same
Before the onset of death, how can man expect to be free of grief?

All the four outcomes that I had listed above are possible and before one takes the gamble, if he accepts that it will be one of the possible outcomes, he will learn to adjust to the reality, post the action. Here again, I have known that the decision to get married is taken impulsively, because it seems to be the correct one at that time without anticipating that it may not turn out to be the Mills and Boons type of marriage and can lead to avoidable misery.

Another major risky decision that people take is in career change with a similar approach and avoidable misery is often the outcome. I had suggested to Nandu that he become a gym greeter like Wallmart greeters to encourage visitors to use the staircase instead of the escalator and this is what he had to say in response – “I would but I am told Walmart don’t pay much and I don’t like Chinese goods ! And career wise it will be like going up a down escalator – going nowhere fast!”

We are all the time taking risks consciously or unconsciously and it is as much part of life as breathing is. But I do see people vacillating and not being decisive weighing the risks and suffering and it usually amuses me. It is not however very amusing to me when it comes to my own vacillation. I am right now at a crossroads about where to live for the rest of my life. An old plan to sell the present larger than required home and move into a more manageable smaller one is occupying my thoughts but leaving the known, comfort zone is causing unease to say the least. Quite whether this is an inability to take the risk or whether it is just a clinging to the past is a moot point. Not being someone who spends time on weighing risks before taking action and more often than not, depending on my instincts, honed by such a long innings in the crease of life, to not let me down. this particular conundrum is a new experience. I have to come to grips with it soon and I no doubt will.

I hope you enjoyed reading this post on the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where eleven of us write on the same topic. Today’s topic has been chosen by Grannymar. The ten other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order, Delirious, gaelikaa, Grannymar, Maxi, Maria SF, Padmum, Paul, Shackman, The Old Fossil and Will. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, do give some allowance for that too!

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