We asked some of the most interesting folks in the community to open up about how they think about taking chances and the role risk has played in their lives and careers. Risk is by far the topic folks talk to us most about and we hope the responses below will help shed light on many different perspectives.

Sheridan Cassidy | Actress, Jazz Musician & Vocalist

For me, risk taking is imperative. The only way to get anything you want is to take a risk and go for it. With whatever your goal or aspiration may be, whether it’s the dream job, that epic relationship or even the lifestyle that you truly want will come fear of judgement or failure, but most of all, I think we fear loss. It’s having that dream scenario and then losing it that can shake us to the point where we make every excuse and don’t even try. There might even be elements of your current circumstances that you don’t want to lose, even if your life would be better after reaching your goal. Read more>>

Jessie Sohpaul | Visual Artist & Designer

As a creative person it’s very important to take risks in order to make and introduce new things to the world. Stepping away from my artistic style or choosing a different medium is vital to grow as an artist. I’ve definitely discovered a lot about my creative practice through this process. Risk taking makes people uncomfortable but it’s very important to grow as a creative person. Read more>>

Brent Huff | Actor & Director

It’s a risk if you don’t take a risk. As they say, “a safe ship never leaves the harbor”. I have taken risks where I have failed spectacularly, but with each failed risk I learned something valuable. On the other hand, I have enjoyed big wins that would not have happened if I didn’t take the risk. Both as an actor and director I have been willing to not play it safe. If I fail, it wasn’t for a lack of trying. Read more>>

Darro Chea | Pop Punk Artist

I’ve always thought that most big wins in life are not gained without risking something in return. Being an artist inherently involves taking on risk. The obvious risk is monetary; spending money on production, marketing, touring and promotion. Of course there is way more to it than that. When you write and release music, you’re displaying an extremely vulnerable side of yourself and you risk the emotional trauma that comes with it. What if they hate my music? What if I’m not good enough? What if I’m disappointed? Read more>>

Rocky Rose | Multi-Instrumentalist Musician, Composer, Performer & Aerialist

Pick one thing and be really good at it, they said…. but I couldn’t pick just one. I took a risk by pursing a career in music to begin with, so why stop at just being a performing musician? I graduated Berklee College of Music and went on to receive my Masters of Music in Composition for Screen from the Royal College of Music in London. Do I love writing for orchestra? YES! Do I love writing hybrid scores for tv shows and films? Absolutely. Was I happy being stuck behind my computer screen every day? Hell no. Read more>>

Laura Auer | Singer, Music Artist

This one is easy. For artists and musicians, risk taking is a lifestyle and I would even go as far as saying a learned skill. There is a moment that comes in everyone’s life when they get their big shot, and you have to take it when it comes whether you are ready or not. Risk takers know this and jump through the door when it opens. It will either lead to success or just another failure, and we are used to failing a lot so another one is no big deal, you’re just in the same spot you were in already anyway. If you look at any successful musician in history, we know their success came from three basic things 1- natural talent, 2- not giving up, Read more>>

Alex Cantu | Rapper, Producer, Songwriter & Model

As I’m writing this, I’m on the eve of my 30th birthday. And I’ve always been a big birthday person, so this certain birthday has become pretty monumental for me. Thinking about how risk has played a role in both my life and my career, it’s not only played a major component in my life, it’s been essential and quite frankly terrifying. Ever since I was 14 years old, I’ve had to carve out my own lane in life and figure out how to shine my light while I watched the rest of my siblings succeed in whatever they strived for. Read more>>

Alvi Ahmed | Singer & Songwriter

Risk is necessary for success and without the presence of it, normalcy is inevitable. Biggest risk I ever took was dropping out of college to pursue music. It caused a huge distress in my relationship with my parents and have lost many dear people along the journey. Despite the new struggles and hiccups that emerged, I knew my love for music and what I was doing is so strong that I put full faith into God to rebuild damaged relationships to something much stronger and loyal. I was given an ultimatum of either staying under my parent’s roof and finishing school or leaving to do music. Read more>>

Aaron Kim | Fine Artist & Student Athlete

Risk drives progress. It’s simply a part of the job as an artist, whether a potentially career-changing business decision or a creative leap in a personal project. Big or small, successful or otherwise, these challenges we face on a near-daily basis open new pathways and push us in all sorts of directions. I’m a strong advocate of the saying “if you want something you’ve never had, you’ve got to do something you’ve never done.” Not that long ago, I made (what I believe to be) one of the most important decisions I’ve ever faced: Read more>>

Alexander Tebeleff | Music Producer, Composer, Mixer, Songwriter and Teacher

Taking risks has always been one of the biggest parts of my life. One of the best pieces of advice my mother ever gave me was that anything that was really worthwhile in life involved some level of risk. Music was a clear life path for me pretty early on, and I’ve been taking risks to keep that the main focus of my life for the majority of it. Quitting my job to go on tour across the country for two months with my old band Paperhaus, moving across the country with my now wife without a place to live from DC to LA to look for new opportunities and challenges, Read more>>

Effy Han | Bilingual Chinese actor

1–I used to equal risk-taking with recklessness, not anymore. I think our willingness to take risks reveal how much we think we deserve. High self-worth comes with a strong trust muscle. In this sense, taking risk for me, now, means trusting myself and stepping toward what I want, moving through this world with a playful nature, a willingness to explore. 2–I took the risk of following my desire of being an actor, traveled to the U.S alone, fly straight to LaLaLand…and 6 years after, still here, grow more and more confidently into my artistic self. So, taking risks has allowed me to found my joy and peace, and that, worth all the hardships risk can bring. Read more>>

Jaylen Tate-lucas | Storyboard Artist

Getting your foot into the door of the animation industry requires more faith than you might think. While it is important to maintain a consistent practice in your art, it is also easy to get lost in that practice in an attempt to achieve some sense of satisfaction or perfection in your portfolio. Read more>>

Adrian Corpus | Artist

Risk is something that I’m glad exists. It makes things interesting and makes you think. You get to think about all the pieces of what you’re working on. Risk makes you feel the uncertainty in your life/career. You learn about yourself in ways you don’t expect at first. It makes you feel nervous, contemplative, scared, etc about the outcome. This shows you that you are really passionate about what you’re doing. It makes you actually take a step back and see the bigger picture. It makes you wear different hats, to think differently, and work collaboratively within a team. Read more>>

Kalyn Fultz | Creator/Writer

I went skydiving for the first time recently, it taught me a powerful lesson. Take the leap of faith and the world will open up to you. I can’t tell you how many times I didn’t do what I wanted or say how I felt because I was scared of the risk. Both in my personal life and professional. Overtime I realized that growth and prosperity comes from risking your comfortability. Read more>>

Anat Ebgi | Art Dealer

Taking risks has been the most important role in my life and career. I grew up in Miami and I knew I wanted to study art history in New York. Without the financial help of my parents, I moved to the cit on my birthday, Aug 29, 2001… 14 days before 9/11. I moved to a city that in an instant was totally shifted. I attended Eugene Lang, part of The New School for Social Research and studied “Arts in Context” — a framework of thinking about art that I still use in my approach today. Read more>>

Mr. Fully | Mogul

You miss a 100 percent of the shots you don’t take. You have to do something you have never done to get to somewhere you have never been. Do it scared do it broke to do it happy. Read more>>

Richard Black | Song writer, performer

Taking risks is arguably the most important component of living a full life; without risk there’s no chance of gain, you always need to jump beyond yourself. Read more>>

Desiree Miller | CEO & Creator

You have to take risks in life to create something great. Things don’t just happen because you wished them to be true. You’ve got to trust your gut, step outside of your comfort zone and go for it! Risks can be opportunities, surprises or even just a matter of trusting your gut. I took a risk moving my family from California to Minnesota when I got the opportunity to be a Marketing Manager for Target Corp. as a career. Read more>>

JOANNA AMENERO, MSW, LCSW, LPHA, RADT-C | CEO of CONDOR CENTER

Condor Center came from the desire of wanting to have freedom and flexibility. I was tired of being overworked, underpaid and undervalued.
I trust my knowledge and my skillset so I knew that I could have a greater impact and support folks in their therapeutic journey by working with my ideal client through therapy and coaching. Read more>>

Kate Pawlicki Bourne | Founder & CEO

No risk, no reward! It is better to have tried and failed than to have done nothing. Read more>>