Recently, an image from when I was twelve years old came to mind. It was the first year a local elementary school held a weekend carnival. The usual junk food booths were there; but one where splatter paintings were created, captured my attention. A paper square was clamped to a turntable and the turntable spun as I squirted or dripped different colored liquid pigments from squeeze-bottles onto it. So, what's the lesson? Many of us approach our lives and/or businesses as many approach creating a splatter painting. We have the tools and we participate, but we do it randomly or even too cautiously. Maybe we watch what someone else does, admire their result, and copy them as best we can. Of course, we don't get exactly the same result because we can't be sure we use the same pressure when we squeeze the paint out. Maybe we didn't notice the exact order they added pigments or hand/arm movements they made; and even if we did and copy these, there's still too many variables too subtle for us to notice. The biggest one being we're unique individuals. Some people might opt to create a splatter painting as simply as possible every time. If it were suggested they "juice" it up a bit, they might say there was no reason to (we sometimes hear people say, "If it was good enough for my parents, it's good enough for me," or something similar). Or maybe fear or doubt about their creativity holds them back, no matter the reason they give. Others might create their paintings like this for a while and then think, "I wonder what would happen if I . . .?" Others might watch someone make their painting and then do theirs differently without fear or timidity. Some may attempt to copy the gestures and color combinations of the bolder types, but discover they're more comfortable somewhere between the "I'll do it how the majority does" types and the mavericks. Others may decide to take it to a next level by using deliberate combinations of colors and create new colors. They may fix it so they control the speed of the turntable. They may use various paper sizes. They get proactive in every aspect. None of these painters would ever have absolute control over the result, but the ones who deliberately, consciously play with the variables would gain greater and greater influence as they took greater and greater "risks" and enhanced their proficiency and understanding of what's possible. Some people are content to create, metaphorically speaking, the same or similar splatter paintings day after day in their lives and businesses. The important word here is "content." Everyone's priorities are different and are to be respected. Most people would love to discover what it is they'd enjoy doing or figure out how to do it in a way that's fun and fulfilling. In the examples of painters given above, speculate about the beliefs that don't serve and beliefs that do serve the different types, those beliefs that motivate how they make their paintings and how they feel about the results. The tools I share with clients in my coaching program, and use myself, open us to clarity and allow us to identify and shift beliefs that don't serve us and replace them with ones that do. I've heard we average around 64,000 thoughts a day with around 70% of them the same thoughts we had the day before. How many of the 70% are beliefs that don't serve you? Think of an issue in an area of your life that has your attention. What beliefs about this issue don't serve you and so don't create outcomes you prefer? What beliefs do serve you? You could look at the ones that don't serve you and write their opposites. That may be enough to create an inner shift that leads to outer shifts, and you may need a bit more. If you're not content with something about your life or business, it's a good time to gain clarity, set your intentions, and deliberately go for the outcomes you choose. It's time to take calculated risks. Playing it safe isn't always the path to a desired experience or outcome, but note I wrote "calculated," meaning thought out and planned. What kind of splatter-painting experiences do you choose to have in life and/or business? What would be fun and fulfilling for you? Is it time to discover this?