A few days ago the Internet connection in my region was down for more than 24 hours. While it’s perhaps just because the connection is not so reliable, it reminds me of an important principle: do not depend too much on something. Or, in other words, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. In my case, if I depended too much on the Internet, then the situation might have affected me badly. Thankfully, that’s not the case.
This principle applies to everything we do. Bad things could happen, so we’d better be prepared for them. We should spread our risks in such a way that a negative event will have minimal impact on us. Of course, we should not spread the risks too thinly that we lose focus, but neither should we put all of them in one place.
While this principle is applicable to many aspects of our life, here I will share 6 ways to apply it that I think are relevant to most of us. Here they are:
1. Always backup your data
Nowadays most of us work with computers. The first and foremost rule to minimize your risk here is to always backup your data. Don’t ever have your data in only one place. I use an external drive to backup my data regularly so that I’m prepared when something happens to my computer. I learned this lesson the hard way: I once lost three-semester worth of data. I hope you don’t have to learn it that way.
2. Have offline copy of important online data
This is a variant of the previous tip. While the previous tip focuses on having a backup of the data in your computer, here the focus is to have a backup of the data on the Internet. The Internet is a very dynamic place, which means things can disappear as easily as they come. For instance, good online articles might not always be there; the sites might be down. This is not to mention potential problem with Internet connection like what I experienced.
That’s why I’ve used Scrapbook for years to save and read the best articles I found around the Internet. This way, I always have the articles I love no matter what happens.
3. Create several income streams
If you had only one income stream and it failed, then you would face the danger of not having any income at all. Having only one income stream is like a company that has only one customer; no healthy company has only one customer. So make it your goal to create several income streams. The passive income resources might give you some ideas.
4. Diversify your investment
Diversification is a well-known principle in investing, and for a good reason: poorly diversified investment might give you a big loss that erase years of good performance. So be sure that you invest in different investment classes such as cash, money market, bonds, and stocks. Find your risk profile and diversify your investment accordingly.
5. Diversify your relationships
In many cases, your network is your insurance policy. When something bad happens or you need something, your network is the place to go to find help and support. The more diversified your network, the more cases it can handle.
6. Diversify your knowledge
Being an expert in your field is always a good thing, but not learning about other fields is dangerous. What if the market changes and your expertise is no longer in demand? In the current fast-pace environment, anything could happen. So be sure that you diversify your knowledge. This way, when a new wave of change comes, you will be prepared to face it. Even better, be a versatilist.
Those are my 6 ideas. I’m sure there are still many other ways to spread risks. If you have ideas about it, feel free to share them in the comments.
Photo by ground.zero
Hope things are going well for you Donald.
Your six points are excellent. I especially like the idea of being versatile and the reminder of the importance of having multiple passive streams of income.
If you don’t follow the first 6 and you loose it all.
7. Don’t wallow in the past, learn from your mistake and begin to rebuild.
[…] Getting Ready for Bad Things: 6 Ways to Spread Your Risks (tags: artÃculo) […]
I’m doing well and I hope you are too 🙂
These six points are also reminders for me; sometimes I forget to spread my risks.
I agree with you. Wallowing in the past is one of the biggest obstacles we need to overcome if we want to succeed.
I usually print out good article to read but then I discover I have lots of articles everywhere.
I actually spent the day yesterday going through my reading pile (OK mountain) and all my filed paperwork (good article, to do, research and information article) and got rid of all the paper that no longer suited by purpose or I now know. I still have a pile of paper that requires me to read more closely.
But I am hoping to reduce/distill this down to just the information bits that are still useful.
I also have similar reading pile in digital form. Every once in a while, I go through them and read the articles that are interesting. But there are articles that I haven’t read. I mainly treat them as references that can be used as needed.
This is very good advice in this article. We should always do the best we can to be prepared for problems.
The point you make that I like the best is to have multiple streams of income. As a lawyer, I learned to never depend upon just one client, because they can disappear with a moment’s notice …
Mr Positioning (Stanley F. Bronstein, Atty, CPA, Author and Professional Speaker)
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