Why You Must Find The Balance Between Being Cautious & Being Reckless

It is better to err on the side of daring than the side of caution.” (Alvin Toffler)

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Understand: There must be a balance struck in between becoming too cautious in life and becoming too reckless in life. Anything other than this balance results in dysfunction within our lives and ultimately, a lack of results within any given domain.

Being Too Cautious

Some people never will have much because they are too cautious. These people see all the potential danger that lies around every corner and within every given situation.

This is called the timid approach to life.

For the vast majority of the cautious, the following holds them back:


Risk, for most people, drives them right up the wall.

These people always ask themselves, “What if this happens?”

“What if it doesn’t work out?”

“What if I go broke?”

What if I can’t find a way to figure it out?”

This is the language of the mentally, financially, and physically poor.

They always look at the potential downside to doing something as opposed to the potential upside. They are extreme in regards to their caution.

But, what most of these people fail to understand is this: All of life is risky. From the day you were born, the risk was always there. Not to mention, we are all going to day one day.


They fundamentally look at the glass as empty instead of full. This inherently creates an environment of caution because it closes them down to any of the outside possibilities.

This is the deadly disease of looking at the bad side, the problem side, the difficult side, and checking all the reason why it can’t be done.

The pessimist leads an ugly life. He figures out what’s wrong as opposed to what’s right. He focuses on flaws instead of virtues. He focuses on the specks on the window as opposed to the sunset outside of the window.

Being Too Reckless

Some people will never learn from the mistakes that they have made. These people see all the potential upside that lies around every corner and within every given situation, but from an extreme perspective.

This is called the reckless approach to life.

For the vast majority of the reckless, the following holds them back:

Short Term Thinking

Reckless people do not think in terms of the long term. Instead, they obsess over the short term rewards.

This alone gets them in a lot of trouble in terms of their health, relationships, career, finances, so on and so forth.

The reckless person eats unhealthy food in the short term.

The reckless person cheats on his wife in the short term.

The reckless person spends all of the money that he or she has in the short term.

The reckless person ignores developing the skills in the short term.

This short term thinking acts in the same way that a disease does. It bleeds into every other part of one’s life.

Naive Optimism

If the pessimist sees the glass empty and the optimist sees the glass as full then the reckless individual takes the glass and breaks it without any thought of the consequences.

The reckless engage in naive optimism. They don’t think that anything will go wrong and don’t truly understand that there are consequences to every action and way of thinking.

Below, we’ll discuss how we can strike this balance between being too cautious and too reckless.

How To Strike The Balance Of Caution & Recklessness

There are a number of things and ways of thinking that we can interact with on a practical level to begin to find the balance between caution and recklessness:

Firstly, understand that the balance is dynamic.

The balance between these forces is an act. What we mean by dynamic is that it must consciously be maintained or else it will fall into one of the extremes.

This balance is also ever shifting which means that you must adapt to it one a consistent basis.

Secondly, combine future, long term thinking with massive action.

Future, long term thinking combined with massive action is the solution to the extremes of either being too cautious or too reckless.

Often times, these extremes just have one component as opposed to both combined for a holistic impact.

For example, if you want to make a change in diet, then think over the long term and decide to choose natural, whole foods while at the same time experimenting with different ways of eating that incorporate that long term requirement

Thirdly, take a close look at examples of the extremes and how they behave.

Learning what to do is important, but learning what not to do is even more crucial.

Observe those who are too cautious and get a deep understanding of how that type of person thinks and acts within the world.

Observe those who are too reckless and get a deep understanding of how that type of person thinks and acts within the world.

The more you begin to deeply understand both personalities, the more you will find yourself gravitating towards the middle of the spectrum in terms of thought and behavior.

Fourthly, practice awareness over the entire situation.

Awareness is the ultimate long term, sustainable solution to most of the problems that we go through.

Knowing this, we must develop our levels of awareness through the use of practices such as mindfulness meditation, journaling, speaking to others, so on and so forth.


A balance within most things in life brings the most sustainable and rewarding impacts. This striking of balance is a skill which means that we must deliberately and consciously implement it.

Writer. Autodidact. Competitive Soccer Player.

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