By Diego Nascimento

Several times I have talked to people who claimed to be afraid of heights. They avoided getting near balconies, windows, or close to any environment that would take them from within easy reach of floor or offer a risk of falling. I still remember the first time that, in the air club, I participated in a stall exercise or, as it is said in Brazil, a free fall. Everything is based on the takeoff of the plane, then reaching a safe altitude for the maneuver and, seconds later, feeling the aircraft dive towards the ground. Needless to say, my adrenaline shot to unimaginable levels, but how can you be sure everything happened within recognized safety standards (I am alive and well to be able to write today’s article – ha, ha).

In the professional life, a fear of heights causes serious problems. It is because of this that many fail to “rise in life” and choose to stay where they are without any desire to learn more or have something to offer others. I affirm and will say it again:  there is a horizon just ahead of you. Have you learned a second language? Learn a third language. Have you perfected your writing skills? Take a speaking class. Did you graduate? Consider a post graduate course and so on. I know people who confuse stability with being comfortable, and this type of reasoning is toxic and capable of “contaminating” other people.

Journalist and writer David Cohen in the book “Culture of Excellence” comments on research done by Dr. Carol Dweck, a professor at Stanford University in the United States. Dweck divides the human mind into two groups. In the first, called afixed mindset, we find people who believe they have a steady growth level and that their talents will not change throughout their lives. In the second group, called a growth mentality, professionals come together who believe in the evolution of intelligence, that the brain can be shaped and that talent is built. Which of the two most catches my attention? The second, of course.

Changing the world is much more linked to the citizen’s entrepreneurial profile than to political ideals. The stall maneuver so famous in the aeronautical universe, requires a deep technical knowledge by the pilot and the co-pilot. Succeeding in life is like that as well, but much more than the theoretical baggage–practice humility, courage and teamwork is a basic consideration for anyone, whatever the position or academic background.

I will close by sharing a phrase I have recently created that might touch your heart: “What are you hoping to achieve? This is a very common question for those who enjoy good results. Do not be afraid!”

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