Taking Risk is essential, but how much, when and why? Taking risks effectively is as much of an art as it is a science and we’ve asked some of the brightest folks in the community to tell us about how they think about risk taking.

Melissa Kanarek | Founder, Brass Tack & Soon To Be Rancher

I can’t imagine a life without risk. Many people in business practice a ready, aim, fire approach to decision making. I’m sure that overall this approach provides a stable, lucrative existence but that is not who I am. I fire and see where the chips fall, which is not something I worked at, it is how I am wired. I am not afraid of failure or concerned with opinion which is very freeing. I have certainly failed throughout the process but that is always the greatest lesson. Life is short, take the risk. Read more>>

Hannah Dannelly | Model and Aspiring Actress

I think about risk In the scariest way. Because to me its the scariest part about entertainment roles. You are in this industry hopefully because you love to tell stories. But what is the right story to tell? What story will people relate to the most. What show has more of a inkling to relate to an audience. Every choice and decision every risk dictates how much further you can move along and or sustain a life doing what you love. Risk has hindered me a bit. I have definitely more aired on the side of caution and hung out there as long as possible. Until I realized I have to start taking risks or I will forever stay stagnant. Even if all your seeing is small successes those will gradually turn into something more if your consistent and have the passion and drive for it. Read more>>

Arion Felton | Recording Artist / Creative / Behavioral Specialist

Making decisions are imperative while on your life journey. I believe that every decision you choose to make , everyday- either brings you closer or leads you farther from your true self, and most importantly your dreams. For that reason alone, I realize that I take risks in life everyday. Starting from who I choose to exchange energy with, what financial situations I bind myself to , and so much more. Right now I’m in a transitional season where a lot of things are changing for me. I’m making big decisions while also trying to ensure that what I’m committing to will truly be in my best interest. Read more>>

Alex Almaraz | Dancer/DJ/Educator

When I think about risk I think of it as an important task. In order to achieve what you want you will have to take risk. Often times that’ll mean to sacrifice other things to achieve what it is you want. All the risks I took and even the risk I took in pursuing my career and only doing that everyday keeps me on my toes and ready. I’ll never go back to another job other than what I love to do. Life is a risk but we choose to live it everyday and that’s the greatest achievement one can accomplish. Read more>>

Jodie Evans | Peace Activist

I ran away from home when I was 12, in 1966, there was no discussion about violence in the home in those days and all I knew was I would die if I stayed. So I ran into the unknown. It saved and made my life. Even though it was out of the frying pan into the fire. What it taught me was it was worse to stay in a bad situation that to leave it. That to risk was to be alive, to shrink back in fear was to miss life. The question is what are you risking? We don’t ask that question when fear keeps us from acting, from asking the clarifying questions or from exploring other options. Why don’t we see holding back as a greater risk? Like now we, as humans on this planet, are not taking the steps we need for real dangers, and instead keep creating more problems. Risk taking clarifies, exposes if there are real dangers ahead or behind and break us out of the boxes we keep building around ourselves in attempts to control and be safe when those are illusions. Read more>>

Aaron Anthony Harper | Men’s Fashion Connoisseur & Digital Content Creator

For me personally, taking risk is everything honestly. I’m a firm believer that anything is possible if you put your mind to it, however, you’ll never know what the possibilities could be without one thing, and that one thing is risk taking. I literally would not be where I am, or be in the position that I am in today without taking any risk. Growing up, everyone around me was contempt with staying in their hometown and working a regular job, and essentially just living a regular life. Absolutely nothing wrong with that, but for me, I always knew I wanted more, but I needed to take a leap of faith, and ultimately take a risk in order to achieve that, and that’s exactly what I did. Iv’e always been someone to differ from the rest of the crowd, to break the trend, and ultimately to pursue anything and everything that I want to do and accomplish in my life, but again, none of that is possible without risk taking. Read more>>

Daniel Crook | Painter, Musician, Dancer and Performance Artist.

Risk is an inherent factor when making what is considered fringe or queer imagery or music. We’ve become so far removed from a time in which queerness was seen as both natural and obvious that queerness is seen as a radical act and therefor making work as a queer person carries enormous risk. Your work will always be subject to more scrutiny. Your work will increase the danger present in your life day to day whether it’s from the media or from the people who hate that you exist, let alone the ones who do despise that existence that they weaponize your work against themselves. Read more>>

Laurie J. Gardiner | Writer, Director, Musician | Laurelwood Studios LLC.

Leonard C. Green pointed out in Entrepreneur that, “Entrepreneurs are not risk-takers. They are calculated risk takers. The difference between risk-takers and calculated risk-takers is the difference between failure and success.” In other words, calculated risk-takers might not play a game of roulette, because the odds are against them, yet they might be open to playing blackjack because it’s possible in that game to tip the odds in your favor through strategic play. Taking calculated risks throughout my career has been one of the key factors that has helped me find success over the years. In order for me to navigate through life confidently with my Plan A, I also make a Plan B, Plan C, and even store a Plan D up my sleeve just in case things go awry. However, I am a firm believer that taking risks without a plan is just as detrimental as having a plan and thinking everything will go exactly the way you planned it. Thus, I try to keep myself flexible and have fun while creating a life I love. Read more>>

Georgia Sky | Bawdy Queen: Plus Size Actor & Creator

Risks are terrifying because you never know the outcome. You don’t know if you’re gonna fail or succeed so I think that’s where people try to play it safe. Safe is the “known,” but I’ve always been the adventurous type. I want to know the unknown so taking risks is part of my journey. I’m an actor here in LA and it’s very rare that you see a Plus Size Black Lead represented in television and film so I decided to create my own lane and become the representation that I didn’t see. So I took the risk of joining TikTok (my creative outlet during 2020 due to Covid) and created my own content that means a lot to me but in the realm of acting and highlighting plus size stories. I didn’t know how it would do, I was scared for sure, but I’m so happy I believed in my vision and stayed true to myself because I’ve had such a positive response. Read more>>

Omniflux (Mahsa Zargaran) | Audio Visual Installation Artist

I approach this idea in two phases. First, capturing the muse. Second, forming and realizing the muse. Capturing the muse: I often have giant art dreams where I’m standing in front of a big sculpture, painting, or piece of music. I run around in the dream trying to find the artist behind the work, and encounter a stranger who informs me that I’m the artist behind the work. When I wake up I sketch out the pieces or write down everything I can remember from the dream. I am also gifted with these visions throughout the day. The flash of an entire painting, sculpture or piece of music will pop into the room and sit in front of me for a few seconds, then vanish. I have to keep my eyes and ears mostly noise-free to catch these flashes, and be ready to pay attention fiercely for when those flashes visit. Forming the muse: now this is where risks come in, because my muse/intent drives my medium, not the other way around. Read more>>

Alex Mackyol | President & Co-Artistic Director, Keane Productions, LLC

I grew up in a pretty small town in South-Eastern Wisconsin, so when I made the decision to go into performing arts and entertainment for a career, the risk I was taking was pretty big, especially considering where I was coming from. Now, whether or not I thought of it as taking a risk 16 years ago is one thing, but now looking back at that decision, and really all of the decisions I made up until that point, they were all with a great deal of risk. I moved to Los Angeles right after graduating high school, and from there for the most part I was on my own. An incredibly small fish in an ocean that I really knew nothing about. I’ve made the move from a full time job, to going freelance, to now being my own boss and taking all the uncertainty that comes with it. But if that initial risk of moving out here to LA has taught me anything, it’s that you only get one chance, and taking that risk is everything. Read more>>

Tatiana Parker | Dancer, Choreographer, Dance Teacher

I must take risks, I’ve always felt the pull toward this. I knew that what I wanted to do was unconventional so the only way to make it happen was to do something different. If we stay the same, nothing will ever change. The unknown can sometimes feel scary but personally, the idea of settling for less than what I desire feels far more daunting. Read more>>

Jeanette Castro | Owner and designer of Candy’s Kloset

Risk is something we all do in one way or the other. And obviously some risks are bigger than others. As someone with anxiety, I have a love/hate relationship with risk. I try to view all pro and cons to anything that requires me to take the plunge and risk something. With my life and career, risk has taken such a huge role, that if I didn’t take certain risks, then I wouldn’t be where I am now. I wouldn’t have a business. Owning a business is such a huge risk in any way you see it. Before going full-time, it wasn’t an easy decision for me to decide if to just pursue my business or continue the career I had gone to school for. I was a researcher in mental health when I started my business, and it was a stable income which is something everyone wants. But I felt the need to take the plunge and go full-time with my business when I saw it was growing and I couldn’t do both anymore. Read more>>

Tristan Gutner | Success Coach For Entrepreneurs & Entertainers

Risk taking is so important. Most of grow up learning to be very risk averse, always seeking the safety of certainty, but nothing truly great comes from playing it safe. I believe we’re all given a Vision of what we’re here to do in this life, something we deeply desire and are drawn towards. Going after that thing is a huge risk. We have no idea how it’s going to turn out because it’s brand new, we’ve never done it before. And because it’s brand new we become a new person as we walk that path. We grow tremendously. Every amazing thing in my life and business have come from taking huge risks, from having a clear Vision and taking a leap of faith towards it. Read more>>

Chef Alexus “Lexi” Jordan | Chef

You take a 100 risks unknowingly everyday and you’re still here. Starting a business is just taking a KNOWN risk, HIGH or LOW, it’s still a risk none the less. For myself, I was young starting Whipped Elements. I had just started culinary school and I was focused. I asked myself, “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” and my answer was simple, “running my own business”. I was focused while being open to everything. I learned a lot of life gems while in culinary school that I applied to my own life and business. First, Always be open! New trends arise, new information is found everyday, things change. So don’t close yourself off because you THINK you know that or you’ve done it already. Even when taking a risk, there’s no real thing as failure because you learn so much along the journey! So your business might not work out like you planned but you walk away with the knowledge and a new plan for a different direction. Read more>>

Sara Sanderson | Actress & Comedian

I would not be where I am today if I was afraid to take a risk. Choosing a life as an artist is not a normal path that people follow. When I first moved to Los Angeles, the only person I knew was my college roommate. My whole life I had dreamed of being an actress and knew it was only a matter of time until I took that big step to move here. It was scary and lonely at first, but I eventually found my footing and my LA family. It’s important to have a strong support group surrounding you in this city. I took another risk three years ago when I signed up for a standup comedy class and hit my first open mic and then my first show in front of 200 people. I have learned to love that feeling of fear in your stomach; it makes you feel alive, it’s exciting. My teeth were chattering at my first open mic, but I didn’t let fear stop me. I always say unless something can kill you, don’t let fear stop you from taking a risk and doing something you may find out you love. Read more>>

Hawa Maya Bangura | Photograher

As an artist and business owner, you will always take risks either big or small. Starting a business is a risk on its own. I realized that If I wanted to grow as an artist I have to take risks. That included trying new lighting techniques, collaborating with another artist, switching up my editing techniques, and more! There is no way around it! By taking risks, rather than thinking of “what if” you move into the realm of knowing. It’s all about trial and error. You have to learn what works for you and what doesn’t. Read more>>

KAYPAIGE | Singer, Rapper, and Social Media Personality

Risk has been at the heart of every decision I’ve made as both an artist and individual. From the first time I decided to step out from behind-the-scenes to my move across the world, people have criticized my choices. I can’t even recall how many times I’ve heard “you’ll regret this”. Still, I choose risk every time. I don’t want to live my life in a traditional way. In order to ensure that, I have to trust myself – despite the odds. When I decided to move to Korea, I was told that my music wouldn’t have a chance there and that I would be losing out. It wasn’t a “safe” move. In the end, it ended up being a great choice. There, in a completely foreign culture, I was able to learn a lot, collaborate with new and exciting artists, improve my skills, and connect with a new group of listeners. In fact, I still work with Korean artists and the base I acquired from my time there is so supportive. I wouldn’t have ever had this chance if I’d listened to others and taken a “safer route”. Read more>>

Leah Khambata | Actress/Filmmaker/Singer-Songwriter

I used to be very by the book, operating only within the bounds of what I knew. If someone said some work could not be done, I accepted it. But my junior year at Wesleyan University, something changed. I attended a talk by a woman (I think it was Dina Kaplan) at our Career Center. To be honest, I don’t remember exactly what that talk was about, but I left with the feeling of empowerment and that anything was possible. Born/raised in Bombay, I had come to the US for college to pursue a career in Film. Neither my parents nor I had any contacts, except for one former classmate of my father’s on the West Coast who had connected me with a production company for my first film internship. But now the summer was approaching again and I needed another internship. I decided I wanted to work at a Talent Agency. The former company I had interned with had mentioned some names of agencies but were unable to connect me to anyone there. Read more>>

Ruben Feliz | Student of Life, Non-Profit President/Founder, Content Creator, Spiritual Worker, Entrepreneur , Artist

Risk taking is an essential part of the process of building the foundation for your success. This whole life experience is about stepping into unknown spaces and seeing what the outcome is. The relationships we choose to pursue, the jobs we choose to apply to, the businesses we want to start, or anytime we get into a car… I’m sure you get the picture. They described risk as “uncertainty about the effects/implications of an activity with respect to something that humans value (such as health, well-being, wealth, property or the environment), often focusing on negative, undesirable consequences” and I use to look at a risk as just that a “risk”. Until I learned that in risk there is reward and then my life changed. The risk I have took have led me to great rewards financially, physically, mentally and most importantly spiritually ! I encourage calculated risk to all those seeking a push. A risk worth taking and one where we are not tied to the outcomes. Read more>>

Martha Thatcher | Actor, Writer, Director

As an actor and as an artist, everything you do has a level of risk to it. Following your passion has risks – Will I make it? Am I good enough? Am I resilient enough? And when opportunity presents itself, will I be prepared to jump and take advantage of that opportunity and grow and flourish in it? As an artist, nothing in your life is certain. You simply have to trust that you are good and you are worthy – That you love your art and are versed in your craft and that the work will come. Then it comes and you are immersed in it and wrapped up in it and are stretching old muscles and building new muscles and doing what you were put here to do. And then, just like that, the gig ends and you are back to waiting and working and grinding and doing your best to stay at the front of your seat so that when the next opportunity calls, you are ready to stand up and take it. As an actor, your job in and of itself is risk. It is allowing yourself to be open and vulnerable and living in your truth under imagined circumstances. Read more>>

Johnny Brillantes | Editor, Filmmaker

The connotation of “risk” is so funny because it sounds so much more scary than it can it can really be. My best take away is that old adage, “You don’t know unless you try.” So, in a practical sense, trying and risking is better than inaction. Sometimes risk is the only option to combat the fear of failure or remaining stagnant. Risk can be a great instrument, weapon, or power-up. Read more>>

Anne Brashier | Filmmaker

I wish I had taken more risks throughout my early career. Improv comedy allowed me to discover the value of taking a big risk, and failing in a giant, public way, but that seemed easy when there was not big money on the line, no crew to manage. But as a filmmaker, I wish I had felt more confident and supported more frequently so that I could have jumped into directing on a bigger scale earlier. I knew I wanted to direct for almost a decade before actually starting to take steps to make films. I played it safe with jobs where I was supporting the creative visions of others because I was scared that my creative dreams were not valuable. It took several mentors who believed in my work and who pushed me to take bigger leaps for me to finally commit to taking a big risk: leaving my producing career and going back to grad school to become a filmmaker. Now I relish taking risks of all sizes. Whenever I am making a decision, I try to pick the option that scares me. Read more>>

Jenna Noelle | Singer-Songwriter & Musician

I view risk as an essential part of what I do. To be an artist and grow creatively, you have to be willing to step outside of your comfort zone. For every risk I’ve taken, there’s been an equal, if not greater, reward to be had. Whether it was stepping on stage in front of a new audience, moving across the country, or simply releasing music; I’ve done nothing but gain from taking risks. Read more>>

Bingo Richey | Co-Founder Rancho de la Luna Mezcal

Bingo Richey : Who takes the risk, gets the reward. Calculated risk is necessary in order to achieve goals. If you don’t believe in what you’re doing, how can you expect to convince anyone else that the endeavor is worthwhile?. Read more>>

Canaan John Dewey | Actor & Podcast Host

Taking calculated risks is so important in life. What I mean by calculated risks is that instead of just blindly doing something, learn as much as you can about the endeavor and then make a decision to take a risk and try for yourself. If we just Took risks without considering the consequences, we’ll end up with more problems to fix than are solved. Taking a calculated risk has a better chance at success because you already know what ‘might’ happen, which prepares you for almost anything; we become proactive instead of reactive. No matter what it is in life that I want to achieve, I first learn as much as I can and then take a risk by making an attempt. Without taking any risks, life will be mundane and frustrating. Read more>>

Pherran B | Videographer / Editor / Director

People often avoid taking risks because of the possible negative outcome that may occur. I’ve personally been one of those people in the past. I grew to learn that when it comes to achieving something, especially career wise, risk taking may be the best possible thing you can do for yourself. I was working as a banker, making more money than I ever had in my adult life, but I hated my job. All I could think about everyday was how I couldn’t wait to get the chance to work for myself. I decided to take that risk and follow my dreams of entrepreneurship, and it has been the best decision I’ve made thus far. Read more>>

Ali Williams | Owner Princess & Me Parties

Risk is a fearful way of looking at an uncertain opportunity outside of our comfort zone. But with great risk, comes great reward. Throughout my career of running my children’s entertainment company Princess & Me Parties, I’ve taken the same faithful and confident energy into each choice. I truly believe that if you stay true to your values and your vision, then everything will work out exactly as it should. My vision is to offer children a chance to connect with their favorite characters in a comfortable environment. After years of performing in the Disney parks and with numerous other party companies, I realized that what was missing was that connection. It wasn’t about the performer’s ego or the company’s expectations, it was about the child. If they were happy, that’s what mattered. It was risky because it was unheard of to put the child above the show, but I knew that was the right thing to do, so I kept that vision in mind as I created party activities and packages that were focused on making a child giggle, play, and open up, and you know what? It worked. Read more>>

Julian De Vizio | Singer/Songwriter

My whole life has been about risk taking and having the courage to back myself and stand behind my convictions. I left school as a sophomore to audition for X Factor Australia to fulfil my life ambition and to get a start as a professional performer. It paid off! My boy band “The Collective”, was formed during the season, we were mentored by Ronan Keating, got to travel to London and subsequently signed by Sony Music. We earned 2 gold records. The risk had paid off. We disbanded in 2015 to pursue solo careers so I took the next big risk to leave home and family and move to LA to pursue a music career and I’m still here. Taking a risk can be scary but it is always a learning experience and it can pay off. Mine did!!. Read more>>

Linda King | Artist

Risk taking is an extremely important component of my art making process. In the 1980’s I was a figurative artist working in Chicago, exhibiting and selling with regularity. My figurative paintings reflected emotions and thoughts about relationship, choice, isolation, humanity, the unknown and unforeseen. Layers and layers of painterly brushstrokes and color were built up to create form and mood. I made numerous fairly large scale (5’x7’) paintings and sold most of them. Then there came a point that those ideas and portraying the figure didn’t work for me anymore. I had nothing else to say. For two years I tried to find my way, to find meaning in the process of art making and in the art object. I came very close to not making paintings or any art. And then I took a leap of faith and just started to draw, then paint trees in a very painterly, expressionistic and abstract style. I no longer felt confined by the figure or specific ideas. This let me just explore paint, color, space, time, and perception. Read more>>

Ali Angel | Singer-Songwriter & Musician

I think being a creative is a life of risk-taking, which will always come with moments of blinded uncertainty followed by moments of beaming clarity, and that’s just something we have to accept and embrace as part of the creative process. To me, risks are choices we make that are fueled by hope, optimism, and a gut instinct that is guiding us to make these choices because they’re leading us closer to our true paths. They often lack logic, reason, or substance, but end up making a lot more sense in the long-run for ourselves than some of the “logical” or societally acceptable choices do. I remember when I first heard the motto, “Do something that scares you every day” because I had a sinking feeling in the pit of my gut that told me just how important it was to follow this, but I didn’t always follow it. I decided to major in Digital Media Production in college, because I always told myself that I just wasn’t good ENOUGH to be that person who majored in music and pursued it professionally. Read more>>

Jasmine Briones | Blogger & Founder of Sweet Simple Vegan

Risk taking has been one the most important factors in the growth of my business and my career. I grew up believing that I needed to follow a specific path in order to attain the success and happiness that I sought after, but what actually lead me to where I am at today was the total opposite. Although I was checking all of the *right boxes* in my life (excelling in school, pursuing medicine, blossoming socially), I always felt like there was something missing, as if my happiness was being blocked in some way. I never truly felt fulfilled in what I was doing, but I always blamed myself for not being grateful enough for my life, because in my mind what I was achieving should have equated to happiness. Even after graduating college, that feeling still lingered and I did not know what I could to do fix it. I struggled so much mentally through my teen years and I never really realized until I was in my twenties that it was because I was forcing myself along a path that I didn’t belong on. Read more>>

Christina Marie Leonard | Actress/Writer/Comedian

I love acting and I also love writing and creating my own content. I do standup often because it’s an easy way to create and perform my own content. For overall, it is low risk. The worst that can happen, the way I see it, is I get a heckler. And honestly, sometimes that can be kind of fun. But with making movies, there is more at stake. I have many scripts I have written, but between paying for equipment, production insurance, cast and crew, and on top of that, taking off work for the shoot from my part time job, it costs a lot of money to film them. Then there is the fear that someone won’t show up for the gig and we’ll have to recast, or now in today’s world, that someone will test positive for Covid. What if there is something problematic that we all overlook during the shoot and discover it in the edit and there’s no going back? What if the film gets finished and no festival accepts it? What if it screens at a festival but no one likes it? What if I go into debt?. Read more>>

Jessie Holder Tourtellotte | Actor | Writer | Producer | CEO

I think that risk taking is the single most important reality you have to accept when making life decision in general, and certainly in business, particularly as a startup entrepreneur, artist, or freelancer of any kind. There’s a tenacity of belief required in order to take certain risks, and a deep understanding of a couple of things. First, it’s actually impossible to avoid all risks because even by avoiding risk, you’re taking a risk. Second, that if you don’t take certain risks, that’s fine, but you are absolutely taking certain rewards off the table. So many people will tell you that entrepreneurship or artistry or anything like this is a “gamble”, and to an extent, that’s true. The exact outcome, measurable results is only partially predictable. But the thing is, you can absolutely stack the deck in your favor. Be relentlessly prepared, understand the value of full commitment, and understand how essential belief is. If you half commit, you’re guaranteeing failure and by trying to “protect” yourself in so doing, guaranteeing your own loss. Read more>>

Shawn Karimian | Attorney at Law

I think risk a necessary and uncomfortable reality of starting your own business and brand. There are certainly different levels of risks that present themselves on an entrepreneur’s journey. Some risks are more easily manageable and digestible. Other risks can have catastrophic outcomes if they do not properly work themselves out. I typically like to assess the risk by contemplating different outcomes that the risk might have, how the outcome would hinder or detract from my goals, and if I will get closer to where I want to be if the risk works out. There is always a cost/benefit analysis that I do when it comes down to determining if taking a particular risk is worth it. The risks I have taken in my career are, without a doubt, a major reason that I am currently in my position. Calculated risks, no matter how scary, can be extremely rewarding. It requires belief, planning, and execution until the goal is achieved. Taking a calculated risk can have more rewards than detriment. Read more>>

Emmanuel Andre “Sonnemm” Mendives | Music Producer & Songwriter

Risk has being the most important thing in my life and career. I had a beautiful stable life back in Lima, Peru. I achieved most of the stuff that I wanted and basically reached to the ceiling of what I had in mind. Fortunately, every time I feel I’m way too comfortable, I get reminded that there’s something I need to change. Comfort is a drug, probably one of the most dangerous ones. Because you’ll always look for it. And the moment you are 100% comfortable, that’s the moment you stop growing. So I took a leap of faith, I decided to leave my life behind and fly to LA with nothing more than my bag, a couple of drumsticks and my computer. Not too much money on my pocket but enough for a few months. And let me tell you something. That was the best decision ever. I didn’t know what to expect from this city, I rejected big work opportunities in my home country and left all my family there. I didn’t know anyone, or had any relatives here. Now I see that that was my biggest risk taken by then. Read more>>

Dongjun Kim | Filmmaker & VFX Artist

I have been working for filmmaking as a director and producer for several years. As you know, the film director has a ton of responsibilities to lead the project into a success. I had a great deal of experience reading the production team. Filmmaking is exactly teamwork so the director must be trained to handle unexpected happening and deadlock in the production process. I’d learned proactive attitude and leadership from my bosses when I was an assistant director. It was hugely helpful to get this character by supporting directors and supervisors. I am sure the various experience in the job will make the expert of risk-taking. Read more>>

Mahelia Santibanez | Permanent Make Up Master

I’m a risk taker, I think that spending too much time in our comfort zone is way more dangerous than trying new things to grow or expand your business. And I do not want to focus only in our professional careers, I’m also talking about our personal life, I love to try and learn new things and spend time fulfilling my person, my mind, and my soul. When I make any decision that challenges me in different ways I become excited because at the end I know I will grow in that aspect. I invite you all to take as many risks as possible, you will realize that being in the comfort zone isn’t really that comfortable. Read more>>

Becki Wilson | Tattoo Artist

In 2014 my fiancé and I bought a Cadillac Escalade off of Craigslist and decided to travel the country doing tattoo conventions. We left our jobs and our apartment behind and we haven’t looked back since. Now in 2021, we own our own brick and mortar tattoo shop in Bushwick where we have cultivated a beautiful artistic environment, our tattoo shop Hades Inquisition, creating what we had always envisioned. Risk has played a huge part in our lives. There’s always a chance For failure when you risk everything you have to pursue a dream or a goal. Between the two of us I don’t think we even give failure any space to occupy our minds. It’s always been “all in” for us ever since the beginning. I was working at 2 different tattoo shops, one in the west village and one in Bushwick and my fiancé , Uriel, was working as a bartender in Brooklyn. Read more>>

Dominique Banos, Esq. | Attorney, Counselor & CEO. Daring Greatly.

1. Risk defines me. I think about risks as human nature’s internal compass that is calibrated over a lifetime as wisdom. 2. Life: Risk taking has played a pivotal role in each stage of my life. Risk has led me through failure to success and on a continuous path of purpose. I was raised by a single mother determined to provide me all the necessary tools for success despite the trials and tribulations of a single black mother in the 80’s and 90’s. During these times, every day presented several risks and challenges, whereas at any given moment, a specific choice could or set off a chain of events leading to either success or failure. In elementary school, during my first week of 5th grade, my mother met with the school’s Principal regarding concerns over my class’s curriculum. The meeting concluded with the Principal shrewdly telling my mother that if she wanted input in my education, she should put me in private school. Read more>>

Jessie Perazzo | Salon Owner & Lead Stylist

If it’s on your mind – take the risk. Taking risks will elevate you to the next level whether you are ready for it or not. There have been many times, both in my personal life and my career, that I have felt unsure of what the outcome would be, unsure of who would approve or if anyone would stand next to me in the next chapter. I’ve had so many sleepless nights stressing over whether or not I should jump into the next chapter of my life. Will I have enough money to do this? Will my peers approve of this? Will my team stay with me through this? You have to throw all those questions out the window and just jump! My absolute greatest rewards have been on the other side of the risks I’ve taken. I would not be where I am today if I never took any risks and now I don’t even question – I just jump! Things will always work out as long as you put in the work and make the sacrifices needed. Take the risk or lose the chance. Read more>>

Fleece Kawasaki | Artist, Writer, Musician, Entertainer

Craig Ferguson once said in his autobiography American on Purpose “between safety and adventure I choose adventure,” when I read those words I took them as a mantra that I in many ways continue to live by, and I’ve found that for me there’s no other way to do it. Moving to LA is the number one example that comes to mind, I came here on such a whim, I literally made up my mind to come here a month before I actually made the move. I came out here with little saved up and knew that I’d find my way, I have this unequivocal faith in myself that life will work out even if things seem scary/unpredictable, and that all my missteps will lead me to somewhere new/great. Read more>>

Arthur De Larroche | Director & Actor

Some people are born right where they want to be and the challenge of their lives is maintaining their position. But, if you want to raise your standing in the societal hierarchy, you’ve got pay your way in risks and failures. But, as I said, it’s not even really risk. What many of us perceive as “risk” is an abstraction – a vestige of ancient days where risk boiled down to a survive-or-die situation. But now, we equate the risk of death to our comfortable, modern failures. I have also been guilty of equating financial loss to death but, over the years, I’ve learned that money comes and goes and so long as you don’t have a repulsive personality, you’ll get help from others to bounce back from whatever financial mishaps you might have. Contrary to popular belief; people like helping people if they’re nice. At least in my experience. Read more>>

Henry D’Ambrosio | Audio Engineer & Producer – Recording Studio Owner

Risks and taking leaps of faith have played a huge role in my life and in my career. It’s the one thing that has gotten me this far and will continue to push me and get me where I need and want to be. Had I not moved to Los Angeles when I was 19 In pursuit of working in the music industry, gone to multiple studio sessions without knowing what was gonna happen or where it would take me, and opening a recording studio in the middle of a pandemic with a baby on the way; I wouldn’t be where I am today. Achieving goals and dreams that I had set out for myself, with so much more to do and risks to take. You have to take those risks and those leaps of faith because if you don’t you may never reach your full potential. You have to learn to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. That’s where the magic happens. That’s where you experience your true self. Read more>>