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Safety net

The argument for a Universal Basic Income, where every citizen gets a monthly stipend from the government with no strings attached irrespective of who you are or what you earn, is that it provides a safety net for people.

The idea is that when people don't have to worry about the basic essentials of life like putting food on the table and paying rent every month, they can feel free to attempt new things, take time off to learn new skills or start new ventures without the fear of failure leading to an existential crisis.

While the concept of a safety net hasn't been tested at such a wide scale under such open circumstances, it has been proven to be successful at other more constrained environments - like with tenured professors who are free to pursue any research they want without fear of losing their job at the University should they fail to deliver results.

There are companies that operate with such safety nets and companies that don't.

In companies that don't, failure can mean being fired or being eternally overlooked for handing any meaningfully important project ever again. And in companies that do, failure simply means that it's a learning experience and that the ones who worked on it can now move onto something else.

And invariably, companies with such a safety net tend to innovate at much higher rates.

At a personal level, we tend to not give ourselves such a safety net when we set out to try new things. Hence, a fear of failure can be so debilitating that it prevents us from even trying.

A safety net can do wonders to our confidence and performance in the long run.

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