Improving your worst-case scenarios

I constantly work on improving my worst-case scenarios, pondering the darkest possibilities in various aspects of life and seeking ways to better manage them.

There are two ways to tackle this daunting topic.

  • Dodge worst-case scenarios altogether
  • Improve your worst-case scenario


In many cases, sidestepping disaster is a wiser approach than attempting to minimize its impact. Gather information on what could go wrong and determine if you can avoid it entirely.

Take, for example, the damage alcohol can do to your liver over time. Avoiding alcohol is a better choice than wrestling with liver damage. Likewise, if you’re drowning in debt with loan repayments devouring more than 30 to 40 percent of your income, you’re teetering on financial instability. Avoid over-leveraging yourself; debt isn’t inherently bad, but too much can be lethal.

Now, consider a job that demands hours of sitting, like mine in computers. Practicing yoga or another form of exercise helps prevent potential health issues from a sedentary lifestyle. Strive to avoid as many worst-case scenarios as possible across all aspects of life.


But life is unpredictable; even when cautious, misfortune may still strike. In these instances, it’s crucial to improve your worst-case scenarios. This involves a few steps.

  1. Identify weakness & risks: Pinpoint weaknesses and risks in areas like finances, social life, health, and income generation. Gather data and knowledge to identify potential hazards. For example, assess the risk of annual flooding in your area or the threat of a recession impacting your job.
  2. Buy “insurances“: Can you protect yourself with insurance for unforeseen events like health issues, fires, or accidents? These events will affect you psychologically, but at least you’ll have a financial safety net. Try to cover as many areas as possible with insurance-like systems.
  3. Set up signals & Alerts: Set up early-warning signals to alert you when things go downhill. If you invest in stocks and their prices drop by 10% or 15%, can you track that and act quickly? Being informed early about potential worst-case scenarios gives you enough time to react.
  4. Seek professional help: Instead of trying to keep track of everything, why not seek professional help? For example, if you’re dealing with financial accounting and filing, consider hiring a chartered accountant; for managing money, turn to non-commissioned financial advisors; for weight loss, a certified nutritionist can guide you. Professionals who have a stake in your success (those who are not working for commissions) can help you avoid most cases of damages and injuries.
  5. Enhance your skills: Throughout life, you’ll gain new abilities and improve upon them. However, there will also be times when skills degrade with age. Continually upgrade yourself to better handle tough situations.
  6. Be Prepared & practice: Shit happens. Have a system in place to deal with it. If you live near an earthquake zone, have a bag packed with money and clothes so you can grab it and run out if it strikes. Have all your financial details in a ready-to-access manner for your family. To be prepared, think ahead, create a plan, and practice. Companies have fire drills for this very reason. Likewise, discuss with your family, worst-case scenarios and point to them how to handle these scenarios.

You can’t avoid all worst-case scenarios. But when you have capability to deal with most situations, it increases the possibility for you to survive with minimal impact.

How are you improving your worst-case scenario?