How to Use “Worst-Case Scenario” to Inspire Action Instead of Fear
For a coach whose goal is to calm and inspire my clients, it may come as a surprise that I often bring up the worst-case scenario. The Worst-Case Scenario gets a bad wrap of coming with a negative mindset, of doom-and-gloom. After all, if we’re searching for how things can go poorly, it’s easy to go down a rabbit hole of worry.
While I am certainly not suggesting you constantly look at how things can get worse, I do want to encourage you to use this tactic to face your fears.
A personal example: As I was building my coaching practice, there was (and sometimes still is) a fear/worry that I wouldn’t reach the client load I aimed for. My son is young and a lot of my time is spent parenting, so even without a full client load, there isn’t much free time.
Read This: My Schedule as a Stay at Home Working Mom
We are also very fortunate in that my husband makes enough that we don’t rely on my making the amount that comes with a full roster of clients (although it would certainly help!) The background worry that spiraled was what would happen if Owen got to Kindergarten and was in school full time and I still hadn’t reached the point where my clients required my full-time attention.
Also, what if we needed more income and I was unable to sign the clients we financially needed. What if…both of those things?
Read This: How I Stop the Worry Train
Looking at the Worst-Case Scenario; Owen in school full-time and/or us needing more income and my not working with enough clients, was something I avoided. It was an underlying worry that I pushed away because it just felt like too much.
Avoiding defining the Worst-Case, or looking at it as something you cannot let happen so much so that you obsess with worry over it, is using this powerful tool to increase your fear.
Instead of fearing this happening and worrying about what that would look like, I put myself in that scenario and asked a simple question. Then what? The answer I came up with was so simple: I’d get a job. Suddenly it didn’t seem so dire.
The next thing I did was look at the likelihood of that happening. I had been building momentum in my business, I currently had a few clients I loved working with and I was finding resources to help in the areas I struggled.
I shifted from fearing this thing that I felt hovering over me, to addressing it head on and looking at what action I would take should that come to fruition, as well as the actions I was currently taking to not allow that to happen.
The stakes lowered and I felt much more at ease in my life, and business.
You can do this, too. Take whatever worry is in the background and look at it head on. Ask yourself:
- What is the Worst-Case Scenario that could happen?
- What is the likelihood of it actually happening?
- What options do I have, what resources can I pull from, should it happen?
There is nothing pessimistic about thinking of the worst-case scenario, so long as you don’t get stuck in it and come at it from a place of fear. Coming at your worry or fear from an objective standpoint can be incredibly empowering. It’s like taking the mask off of your fears and saying, “I have a plan for you.”