Teamwork time management risk analysis: overcoming fear makes you productive

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What does extreme sport have to do with the job? A lot of! Because with both you have risks and fear that you have to learn to deal with. And it depends on the team spirit. Both make you productive.

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Simone Janson Simone JansonSimone Janson is publisherGerman Top20 blogger and Consultant for HR communication.


Taking risks releases productive forces

Taking risks, daring unexpected things often releases unexpected productive forces in the end. At least, that's how I felt when I was doing canyoning in Canada - in Baie-Saint-Paul in the Canadian province of Quebec.

Wikipedia writes about canyoning that it is walking a canyon from top to bottom. This is a gross understatement: In fact, we climbed down, secured by a rope, a rock over which a waterfall flowed.

Fear of obstacles that you cannot see

It is just like in real life in canyoning: The climbing tour is made more difficult by the fact that you cannot see the rock under the water, that the stones are slippery - and of course that water constantly comes from above. We still had a simple tour suitable for beginners.

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And yet: I was afraid. I am not an extreme athlete, not even very athletic. I enjoy hiking, kayaking and jogging recently, but I have never climbed before. I probably wouldn't have done it voluntarily, but it was part of the program, so I thought “Don't be a frog”.

How to overcome fears and deal with risks: 4 tips

For me, the self-experience was interesting, which in my opinion can also be transferred to the normal everyday work routine. I would like to explain this in the following 4 points.

  1. Complex planning - the hardest part is getting to the start: Our guide Valérie said right from the start that the hardest part was getting to the starting point at all. I didn't believe her, but looking back, she was right. We first had to walk along a railway line (after all, trains don't come as often in Canada) and then climb a steep path. We were not secured with ropes. The subsequent actual climbing tour was easy. I can transfer that to everyday life: preparing for something is often more complex and difficult than actually carrying it out. And on many occasions during this phase we are more afraid than absolutely necessary, which can be an obstacle to the implementation of projects.
  2. Trust wins - whoever lets himself down achieves more: One of the most amazing experiences I've had while canoying is that when I relax and let myself fall into the rope, I can achieve more and get down better. You think you should have as many parts of your body on the rock as possible, hold on with your hands and feet. The opposite is the case: you take a quasi-seated posture, your legs stretched out against the rock, and then climb down on the rock with your feet. It takes a lot of effort to let yourself fall into the rope - with your hands on the rope, of course, and a certain amount of body tension. Nevertheless, it is much easier than if you stick fearfully to the rock. I learned one thing from this: With all the constant stress and all the fears that storm in on us every day, we should simply relax more often and let things go.
  3. Routine is everything: While I always carefully examined the climbing routes, our guide Valérie quickly climbed over the slippery stones like a weasel, as if she had never done anything else. I have realized how important routine is in such situations: it leads to more security and less fear. You just have to be careful not to tempt her to become frivolous again because you feel too safe.
  4. Healthy selfishness is better for that Team: We climbed in a group of five and, to be honest, I was a little scared of stopping the others, who all had more experience. Therefore, at one point I hurried a little, slipped, slipped - and already it hit me against the rock. Fortunately, nothing happened except for a scraped elbow. Nevertheless, at that moment I learned that too much consideration for others can sometimes be harmful for the entire team - in the case described, it took longer. It is important to correctly assess your own abilities and weaknesses, not to let yourself be rushed and to take the time it takes to achieve the best result for everyone.

Conclusion: What do you learn when you overcome your fears?

Overall, on my canoyning tour, I learned that it is a valuable experience to overcome your initial fears and skepticism and to try something new.

Various factors then help you achieve your goal better. Overcoming fears makes you productive and leads to better results, as I've found.

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