Shoot your shot? Take a chance? Society bombards us with messages, phrases, examples and stories of how taking risk is the key to success, but is anything ever that simple? We asked some of the brightest folks we know to tell us about how they think about risk. We’ve shared their responses below.

Ashley Park | Independent Film Producer

What some people consider risk, I consider a calculated investment in myself. As an independent film producer, it’s about taking stock of what you have, and finding a way to make something good with it. This ‘no excuses’ approach to production means not waiting for the ideal circumstances to begin a project. If you wait for things to be perfect, you will always be waiting. While this approach does involve risk, it also ensures that you are constantly growing as a person and a creative professional. I think the greater risk is not making your project, because the only movie guaranteed to fail is the one you never finish. Read more>>

Cassandra Stadnicki | Florist and Forager

I think without taking risks, a person will feel a false sense of security. Taking a risk is scary, but for me hiding in fear would be a much worse option. My entire human career has been illustrated by a series of risk taking behaviors (haha). Some of the risks I took as a young adult helped me identify who I am and who I hoped to become. It took a lot of soul searching to get to a place of contentment. I found that the more I pushed myself through the fear or right into the thing I was worried about, I’d get the result I wanted and the next goal would be easier to reach. I pushed myself to find the life that brings me joy, creativity, flexibility and enough money to live a decent life. Flowers are these amazing creatures I get to spend most of my time with both in nature and in the studio. I used to talk about becoming a florist or artist when I was a kid, I had a rough idea and it seemed like a clear path, but it took me all the risks and facing my fears to get myself here. Read more>>

Vinny Golia | Multi-instrumentalist, Composer, Bandleader, Educator

Taking risks in the music world is the one thing that sets a particular musician apart from the incredible number of highly talented performers and composers that are out there working in the field. Believing in one’s self, with a healthy dose of reality, is an essential factor in achieving your musical goals. I never would have dreamt of playing music for a living unless I jumped in fully committed to learning how to play at 25. The sole reason Nine Winds Records was created was to document the music my ensemble and I believed in. There were a lot of aspects of the record business I had to learn and some I was very good at and some parts I was terrible at, but if I didn’t take a risk, do things myself, use my savings, take out a loan or two I never would have had a label to document the music I play or have a career in music at all. The same applies for the film scoring work I have done, or scores for theatre or dance, if I didn’t stick my neck out and try things someone else would have and could have done those films. My first film score I had no clue what to do once I was hired, I went to a book store that day, and read a book on how to score films overnight, and showed up to spot the next day as prepared as anyone else. Without taking risks, you just sit back and watch things go by. Read more>>

Bianca Catbagan | Director / Photographer

Growing up in the Philippines, risk has always been a part of my work. Leaving home is a risk, pursuing a career in an unfamiliar place is a risk, putting my stories out there is a risk. And most of the time, I feel the weight of my choices. I am more susceptible to sadness and fear away from the comfort of home, but risk pushes you to dream bigger and say, “fuck it. I’ve got nothing left to lose.” Read more>>

Melissa Coulier Melanie Samuels | Wellness Entrepreneurs

We think of risk as where intuition aligns with action. If you’re passionate about an idea, that feeling should outweigh the fear of taking a risk. Risk taking can feel intimidating, but it’s about how you push through the fear and what steps you take to get there. As an entrepreneur, it’s important to find a balance in your risk taking. On the one hand, it’s important to be wise in the risks you take. On the other hand, it’s crucial that you push through limits and boundaries. How can you make your goal or idea possible? What steps do you need to take to get there? Make those steps actionable. Being overly cautious can be dangerous in business, as you can potentially overthink your way out of an opportunity. In business, financial risks can sometimes be the “elephant in the room.” Depending on your relationship with money, it can make or break you. Whether it’s investing in new equipment, hiring someone to help lighten your load, or paying for marketing support, investing can be a stressful decision. Our advice would be to listen to your gut. Read more>>

Aaron Samuels | Chief Operating Officer/Co-Founder, Blavity Inc.

I think risk looks different for people depending on how much privilege they have access to. Silicon Valley history has often heralded the founders who quit their job or dropped out of college to start companies without fully acknowledging the privileges of wealth, race, or gender that allowed them to make that decision. When considering my own decisions, it was important that I remind myself that what risk looks like for some, is very different than for what risk looks like for others. And that I shouldn’t let anyone outside of myself determine whether or not my choice was brave. Read more>>

Martin Novales | Artist

I’ve been blessed to have the majority of my biggest risks in life take place in moments where I felt I had no other choice. Moments where I felt pushed to an edge or to a breaking point that helped propel me towards whatever that risk was. For me, my biggest risks tend to involve leaving something behind. The first meaningful risk I ever took was moving from the small Midwestern town in Wisconsin I was born and brought up in, to San Francisco. By the time I turned 16, I was so over the cold weather, and ready to experience more. I was seeking out more opportunity when it came to my music. SF represented that for me at that age. It was hands down the most terrifying decision I ever made for myself, especially while still in high school at the time. But in retrospect, that risk paid off greatly for me as I was able to grow and open my eyes to so much. Not just musically, but personally as well. About 10 years later, I found myself in a similar scenario. I felt I had basically reached a dead end in San Francisco. Read more>>

Jordan Tribble | Professional Flying Trapeze Artist

Taking risks has always played a big part in my life. Growing up as a kid doing rock climbing, parkour, skiing and other sports, I took many physical risks and had to assess the dangers of the situation I was entering. It is something that initially drew me to my profession as a flying trapeze artist. My job involves calculating the timing and placement of my body with extreme precision in order to minimize the inherent risks that accompany flinging your body off a swinging bar into the hands of another person 35 feet in the air. Learning how to take that physical risk and turn it into a business risk is something I continue to work on by pushing the boundaries of how flying trapeze artists can make a living- taking an unconventional approach to an unconventional profession. I believe taking risks in life is inevitable- even not taking them could be described as risky when you think of the possible missed opportunities accrued by playing it safe. At the end of the day I want to feel confident in my decisions, that I pushed my boundaries of personal comfort while also carefully and thoughtfully considering the consequences of my actions. Read more>>

Jacob Miller | Musician/Songwriter

I believe with any chosen career path, there are bound to be risks that you come across. Whether you’re in entertainment, tech, education, etc., there will moments where you need to assess what is to be done next, and why. In my personal experience playing and writing music professionally for the last 10+ years, I have experienced various stages of growth that have each come with their owns risks and rewards. Folks say the bigger the risk, the bigger the reward.. I’m suppose that is true, but I’ve found that regardless of what risk you happen to be taking it is of vital importance to remain as true to yourself as possible and accept the challenge with your whole heart. Authenticity is something that you can’t buy, and it leaves a lasting impression on folks. Last year, I was asked to audition for NBC’s The Voice which I was initially very hesitant to do as it didn’t line up with my goals in the “type” of musician I strive to be. Upon receiving overwhelming encouragement from my inner circle I decided to accept the audition and try out. Read more>>

Michael Matteo Rossi | Filmmaker

Calculated risks need to be taken in every aspect of life, but especially for those in the entertainment business. It takes a lot of sacrificing and planning, but if it is your passion, you know these things need to be done for the sake of enjoying what you do and climbing up in your career. I was fortunate enough to know what I wanted to do for a long time and I started out at 19 and thankfully, 14 years later, am still doing it. Read more>>

Aaron Guy Leroux | Photojournalist and Documentary Photographer

The first time I ever photographed a protest, this was before I had become a photojournalist, I had a police officer point a shotgun at me. It was a stark moment in my life. Frozen in the middle of a street, surging with adrenaline, wondering if this cop was really going to shoot me…this was not the ideal vantage point from which I could seriously consider the risks I was taking on in my life. It was not long after that moment on the street that I fully committed myself to photojournalism, and the lifestyle it demands. It is an often solitary life, filled with travel, reading, writing, and more than a little risk. Danger comes in many forms, I’ve found. It can, and often does come in the form of immediate, physical peril. But it can also come in the form of emotional trauma. Continually exposing oneself to the suffering of other human beings works like a kind of radiation that accumulates over time in the mind and body. Eventually bringing about physical symptoms and a sickness of the soul. Emotional risks of this kind in my work, took me by surprise. Read more>>

Alexandria Collins | Screenwriter, Director and Actress

I think risk can be a scary but necessary part of life and of someone’s growth journey. We all strive for safety and protection biologically but for some, the call to adventure or risk is dominant. I suppose I would be considered a risk taker although I’ve only just followed instinct and interest. But, I took risks as a child to share my poetry and stories with friends. I took risks in high school and college to run of SGA offices and be a leader on campus. I took risks by moving to NYC and LA alone on one-way flights to pursue my dreams. I’m risking looking foolish now or “failing” when I take risks like start my own digital series (Goals N’ Shit) or write screenplays and pitch myself. Risk is the only way to long-lasting reward. I believe when we shy from taking the leap, we leave a lot of fulfillment on the table. Read more>>

Nicole Herrera | Risk Taking

When starting a business, it’s all about the risks you take daily to get yourself and your business further. It’s difficult at times because you’re not sure if you’ll succeed or if you’ll fail, but what is business with out the risk? There are times when I feel so inspired, but unsure that if I put the work and effort in certain aspects of my business, that it will succeed. You never know how far you’ll go with something until you’ve tried it and that is the point of it all. My whole life I have been very open minded and down to earth. I was never afraid of failing, rather I was afraid of never trying something. When I first started Nude Cosmetics, I didn’t know that I’d be in the position I am in today. And that is the beauty of it. What if I never had the courage to take the leap of faith and start my business? I wouldn’t have had the opportunities I have had if I didn’t. I wouldn’t have a list of products with my brand name in several peoples homes. I would have never had the opportunity to have my products on the face of celebrities or have met other strong entrepreneurs. I wouldn’t have built the relationships with my customers that I have now. Risk taking is a gamble, but as long as you believe in yourself and what you have to offer, your business will succeed. Read more>>

Don Strom | Executive Producer & Managing Partner Salt Productions

One of the biggest risks I’ve ever taken proved to be the most life-changing and worthwhile. I grew up in a suburb of Omaha, NE in the late 90’s where you could start working at age 14. It became clear to me that if I wanted something, I was going to have to jump into the workforce and pay for it myself. I graduated from high school at 17, enrolled in EMS training, and by 18 was one of the youngest firefighters in my local department. A year later, a friend contacted me about joining a 3-month European tour with a performing arts company he worked for in Southern California. I would be helping with the technical aspects of the shows, something I was familiar with having worked in the theatre department during high school. It seemed a little crazy – I had a great job, paid my bills on my own, had a promising career ahead of me…but also, I was still in the closet, trying to figure out who I was emotionally. What would happen if I left my comfort zone and took this leap? Turns out, amazing things would happen, it was the best decision of my life. I have now had a fun, crazy, exciting career in the entertainment industry, and taking that leap set the stage for everything I’ve done since. Read more>>

Jenna Brister | Screenwriter & Storyteller

Being risky is a huge part of getting better at writing/storytelling, because choosing to do something creative and potentially fail is never a safe choice. I’ve gone a less conventional route in my own personal life to pursue a career in entertainment, mostly by prioritizing career moves over milestones that would probably help me feel more normal. I’m not saying I’m a nun, I’ve had some great loves and relationships through the years, but at the start and end of every day, I’m always thinking about what project I’m working on, what scene I have to crack in some screenplay, or whatever the ‘issue du jour’ is. Getting up on stage hasn’t felt too risky to me lately, because I’ve done it for so long so it’s not a fear of crowds or attention that feels risky, I have never much cared about looking ridiculous. I’ve risked looking like a fool for love, a fool for going full speed towards (what turns out to be) dead-end stops, and I’ve become accustomed to the certain amount of false starts and things that seem promising that may never come to be. Read more>>

Badir McCleary | Art Business Consultant

I’m a HUGE risk-taker. I believe that you have to be that way especially if you have high aspirations in your career. Chances make change (in a lot of ways) and if you’re not seizing opportunity by risking time, money, or yourself are you even in the game these days. Read more>>

Tim Kang | Owner Grain Lab

Risks in terms of today is more about understanding oneself vs life and death. The more risks one takes, puts one into situations to learn more about themselves. Risks have been opportunities for me to continually challenge myself and keep me grounded. Read more>>

Neloo Naderi | CEO + Peace Trainer at Peace Unleashed

Taking risks has definitely accelerated by personal and professional growth over the years. I am not shy about taking a leap, and I’ve managed to do pretty well each step of the way. However, there is an important distinction I want to make. People often say, take calculated risks. I understand the merit in that statement but life is unpredictable. No amount of planning will provide absolute certainty. As a business owner, no amount of planning was going to prepare us for what happened across the globe in 2020. What we are in control of, however, is our own belief in ourselves and our capabilities.. Learning to believe in ourselves plays a major role in how we show up, how we get back up if we fall, and how we move forward. When contemplating a decision that involves risk, first check where you are emotionally and mentally. If you are in a state of anxiety and fear, do not make a decision from this place. Step away from the situation and invest a little time raising your vibration so that you can tap into your innate wisdom and clarity. Read more>>

Elizabeth Waterman | Photographer

I create meaningful work when I force myself into the unknown. Most recently I completed a four year project photographing strippers across the United States. The project will be released as an art book titled “Moneygame,” published by XYZ Books Lisbon later this year. The creation of Moneygame is a triumph of personal risk. A professional voyeur, I’ve dabbled in and orbited many subcultures: drag, club, carnival. Lots of nightlife. I’ve developed my photographic style in the field, skating along the periphery of other people’s moments. In 2016, after a decade in the business, I felt a growing need to be somehow more personally involved in the process . . . to risk, to face my own unopened doors. For years I was hesitant to document the world of strippers and other sex workers but mesmerized by it all the same – the garish parade of flesh, the dark undertow of vice, the seamy basements of the city. I needed to find a way in. I scoured the city for a strip club where I could take pictures. I was willing to mop up at the end of the night, I told the owners; I would even dance. Read more>>

Diane Brigham | Art & Education Community Leader

Every day in a nonprofit art organization offers some kind of risk. Will others believe in our mission enough to support the work required to do it? Are our strategies making a meaningful difference in the community? We are always taking a chance. But doing nothing is the greater risk. So the challenge in our work, as in life, is to consider which risks to take. At Ryman Arts we believe that together we can have a positive impact. I often think of our decisions less as risks and more as experiments to test, learn from, and keep moving forward. For example, after the pandemic started, we quickly had to shift to virtual studio classes. We even created a very successful online fundraiser centered around artmaking at home guided by outstanding guest artists, called Ryman Arts Out of the Box. We also observed more people were shopping online. So we launched the new Ryman Arts Studio Shop with a curated mix of gifts to enhance your own creative life with all proceeds going to support our free art classes for talented youth. Read more>>

K38 Shawn | Servant

The natural order of all organisms and patterns in life are risk filled with tragedy, opportunity and errors or problems. Even our conception, in utero growth and birth are risk filled. It is a way of being for all living things. The greatest risk I face is another human being. You and I can live with a beloved for 20 years and one day ‘wake’ up and see a stranger of front of me or you, or be the stranger on that stage. That is the mystery of my or our spirit, soul and awareness of perception of what I or we attach our opinions, experiences and evidence towards weighed against personal values. Every action and decision I have taken is apropos to the current awareness, education, knowledge or understanding of where I was in that moment. The wisdom of this is reflective, its cumulative, not a finite description. My mistakes are born in my optimism that ignored risk because I was not able to determine or foresee how I would contribute to the actions. The failures of risk as we say, are part of my development as a human, and my accountability of my mistakes is the real struggle I face. Read more>>

Noelani Mei Lee | Film Writer & Director

“Risky” was the name of the first feature film script I ever wrote. I was fourteen, so predictably, it was terrible. I had put forth a gallant effort to tell an exciting story about a group of kids who got involved with some… well, risky business. At the time, I was a student at a small independent film school in Austin, Texas. I brought my most polished draft to my instructors and was given a harsh lesson in reality that day: not everything you write will get made. In my mind as a writer, handing off my screenplay was the riskiest thing I could do. In a way, I was baring my soul. The worst case scenario? Total letdown, and that’s exactly what I felt. The funny thing is, though, that this ended up being an exponential step forward in my filmmaking career. Had I not faced the rejection of “Risky” as a potential project for the school, the slew of short films I made to prove myself never would have followed. By the time that I actually made my first feature five years later, I had a much better grasp on storytelling. Sending off a screenplay may seem like a pretty small risk. Of course, risk is in many ways subjective and, let’s face it, I’m naturally a risk-averse person. Read more>>

Paco Versailles | Musician/Band

We think risk is an inevitable thing when it comes to music. Every time you put yourself out there and pour your thoughts and emotions into a piece of music, you always risk possible criticism by your fans or the industry, which at times can be very demotivating. However, it’s something you habituate too, and ultimately the way of life for an artist. We take risks with our music all the time. We write in a very un conventional style and never try to fit a mold or think too much about what is popular at the moment. We make music that we feel is honest and genuine regardless of how it will be perceived. It might not be the safest route, but we feel that its the most rewarding. Read more>>

Maria Corso | Director & Producer

I think about risk as something that’s essential to the creative process. Taking risks is what elevates art from something familiar to something we have never seen before. Whether it hits or misses, it created a conversation and helped to move the needle forward for the form in one way or another. My first big risk was when I moved from Michigan to Los Angeles after graduating college. I didn’t know anyone, had never lived on my own, and my only job prospect was a once a week unpaid internship, along with a volunteer position at a film festival. Cut to almost 9 years later, and I’ve directed 3 narrative shorts, 5 music videos, and launched my own independent production company. Every decision I’ve made has had some sort of risk, some more intense than others, but each risk has led to the next opportunity. When I direct, I never want to do something safe. I always go with taking the riskier choice, whether it’s aesthetically or a music cue or a note for an actor. It usually leads us to something more interesting or if it doesn’t, it opens the conversation for deeper exploration of what we are trying to get to. For me, I don’t see risk as something dangerous or daring-I see it as my intuition testing me, guiding me in the right direction. Read more>>

Jonas Gaida | Founder of G-Studios, Director & Producer

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.” ― Helen Keller, The Open Door I love this quote because that is exactly what I strive for. Being stuck in the so-called “comfort zone” is your biggest enemy. Taking risks means to expand your mindset, grow your personal life and take business decisions which might not always be easy. I have been taking risks in all aspects of my life. Leaving my family and friends in Germany in order to move to Los Angeles and pursue a career not knowing what the outcome might be. Spending thousands of dollars on equipment and camera gear hoping that this is going to elevate my business and allowing me to earn even more money. If I would not have taken any risks in my life I would not be at the position where I am at right now. If there is no struggle, there is no progress. You only grow as a person if you push yourself. Everyone who is reading this, I encourage you to start thinking more critical. Please implement habits and things into your life which might feel uncomfortable at first. Trust me. The adventure is exciting. Read more>>

Julia Gomes Rodrigues | Storyboard artist & Filmmaker

For me, taking risks is what keeps me improving my art as well as my life. The biggest risk I took was leaving my whole life back in Brazil when I decided to move to California to study animation. This forced me to step out of my comfort zone and experience a completely different culture and lifestyle. I was able to visit new places and meet new people that would become lifelong friends and also coworkers. It also forced me to push myself and my work to learn new skills and my limits. I never would have thought that I would be where I am today. I think it’s always good to leave your country/state at least once in your life, so you can experience different perspectives and grow as a person. Since I’m under a work visa, I have no idea what to expect from my future. I might get a new visa, if not, I would have to go back to Brazil or whichever country I feel like I need to go. Maybe I will start my own studio, or have a different career, or go explore the world, or open a sanctuary for wildlife rescue? I have no idea. It’s interesting to have this kind of uncertainty and freedom, as an exciting mystery waiting to happen. Read more>>

Jason Zullo | Professional Photographer @zlightphotography

I’ve always been a risk taker and a thrill seeker but my family upbringing attempted to steer me towards a safer path. After my first year of college I dropped out to move west and pursue a professional snowboarding career. When this path didn’t work out I went back to college and discovered I had a passion for both photography and green building design. I ended up choosing to become a green building consultant because that was the safer path. Years later, I finally had the realization that I was truly an artist/photographer and not a desk jockey. It was at that point that I faced risk head on. I decided to quit my job with no real plan other than traveling SE Asia and taking photos. This was the scariest thing I had ever done in my life but it was a risk that I felt compelled to take. It was a literal cliff jumping, last minute flight catching, friend making, health straining, and life changing experience. During the two years I was traveling I took over 25,000 photos, created my photography website, and filled it with my best content. During the last eight (8) months of my travels, I lived in Vietnam and just as I was running out of money, I landed a contract with the Vietnamese Tourism Board. Read more>>

Vijaya Lakshmi | Indian Classical Dancer, Choreographer, Speaker, Feminist, Actress, Writer & Singer

The greatest risk is to be oneself, because, everything in our conditioning is about being what we are expected to be, rather than be who we really are. It is a “risk” well worth taking! When I look back at my life and all the events in it, be it personal or professional, I see that I never feared taking risks. People who have had the greatest impact in society are those who did not shy away or get intimidated by taking risks. It is obviously, much more “safer” and convenient to follow the herd, but to follow ones heart, takes immense courage and conviction. I have found, that when I decided to take risks, and follow my intuition, the path, however challenging, has been immensely rewarding, in fact in unprecedented ways. It’s almost like, when we, as individuals, try to stay true to ourselves and who we are, the Universe, recognizes that and goes all out to support us in our “solitary” endeavour. When we take the first step, the Universe takes the remaining steps to enable us realise our dreams and aspirations. On the personal front, my earliest recollection of taking risks was, as a young teenager. Read more>>

Jeff Greenberg | CEO and Founder, FUGU Corp.

Entrepreneurship is inherently risky. It’s certainly not for the faint of heart as it can be terrifying at times. You’re “all in” with your own future, as well as that of your family. The stakes are huge. Once you go down that path, though, it can be hard to imagine doing anything else. It’s not the kind of job where you can turn it off at the end of the workday, but that is part of the excitement. It’s one reason I have so much respect for mega business leaders like Elon Musk. He’s achieved unbelievable success, yet he keeps risking it all in order to stay in the game. He wants to keep innovating and pushing the boundaries of what we know and the ways in which we live our lives. On a much smaller scale, we try to bring that same drive for innovation and success to FUGU every day. It’s a key motivator to keep pushing forward even during the most stressful of times. One way to mitigate the risk is to surround yourself with the right people. I’ve been fortunate in FUGU to have an incredible team who help keep us pointed in the right direction. Read more>>

Sherri Tan | Investor & Bridal Store Owner

I love this question! I am more risk tolerant than most people I know in the sense that I will take the plunge if my heart/instincts says it’s the right thing to do. This has served me well in my life + career and I have reap the rewards of those risky decisions even though they might not make sense to people around me at that time. A mentor from my Wall Street days once told me that: “In life, you have to choose your battles wisely. Don’t just choose the ones you think you can win, but only choose the battles that will gain you a ton of upside if you win”. Those words has stayed with me and I think about risks the same way. Over time, I have refined the approach and will add that I only take risks where I have a reasonable chance (more than 40%) of success based on what I know of my own ability. For example, I took a huge risk coming to the U.S. for my undergraduate education when I cannot fully afford the entire tuition+room&board even after receiving a full tuition scholarship from my college. I’ve never left Malaysia (or even the island I’m from) at that time, I don’t know anyone in the US at all that I can reach out to for help if needed. But still, I thought it could be the adventure of a life time. Read more>>

Hollie Hart | Photographer & Director

Risk is what keeps my work moving. Especially in the fashion industry, everything is constantly changing and evolving so you have to adapt and try new things. I’m also afraid of ever staying complacent. I always want to grow and improve. I think as artists we can get stuck in our heads a lot of the time, so having people around you to offer another set of eyes and perspective is key. Read more>>

Sebastian Escamilla | Boutique Owner

I think about risks in one way and that way is always asking myself whether or not I’ll regret taking it. Instead of focusing on what could go wrong, I think of all the things that could go right because it’s inevitable that both will happen. That being said, what makes it worth it? What do I envision for my future? Where will I be in 5 years if I take this chance? These are all things I tend to think about when taking risks in life. In my experience, taking risks has had mostly positive impacts in my life. When taking a risk has gone wrong, I’ve learned valuable lessons, and when they’ve gone right, I’ve leveled up and had significant value and purpose added to my life. Read more>>

Leah Knauer | Actress/Comedian, Artist, & Co-Host of “Basic Witches” Podcast

Every choice we make is a constant balance of risk versus reward. On my podcast “Basic Witches” that I co-host with Rachel Laforest, we often say an intuitive yes followed by fear is a sign you’re making the right move. We as humans are here to take chances, be bold, live out loud, and make the world a better place while we can. I have found that the biggest risks I’ve taken have given me the greatest rewards. For example, a few years ago I thought it would be hilarious if I tweeted at Kevin Smith for 278 consecutive days to get into his movie. A little annoying? Yes. A little crazy? Yes. The craziest part? It worked. Each day that I sent a tweet, I was risking several things: looking stupid or desperate, having Kevin Smith block and/or hate me. But the reward was that I learned how important it is to declare exactly, specifically what it is that you desire – no apologies, no justifications, no explanations. Announcing to the world, every day, what you want and knowing that you deserve it. Some days you may not *feel* like you deserve it, but I promise you do. Read more>>

Allison Fallon | Bestselling Author, Speaker, Founder of Find Your Voice

Most of what is said about “risk” in popular culture I find to be unhelpful. When we talk about risk, we tend to start with the principal that, “without risk, there is no reward.” Therefore the interpretation is that the more risks you take in your life, the more rewarded you’ll be. The problem is that what feels like a “risk” for one person might not be a risk for another. And arbitrarily taking risks in your life might not improve your quality of living at all. It might just give you more anxiety. Let me give you an example. I would consider myself a natural risk-taker. I’ve jumped off of waterfalls in Costa Rica, quit my job to go on a road trip to all 50 states, and written down my most vulnerable stories to publish on the internet. And yet when I was in the middle of making a huge decision several years ago, I found myself feeling a good bit of anxiety about the choice. It was risky. But I coached myself with the conventional wisdom about risk. I told myself that without risk there was no reward, and that I would grow as a person if I could dig deep and find the courage to take this risk. So I jumped in with both feet only to find that the risk didn’t improve my quality of life at all. Read more>>

Symone Sade | Wardrobe Stylist

I think risk are important. Without them, everything is boring. Risk have played a big role in my career so far. I think you get to a point as a creative where you have to make choice between working for someone and going full force independent or freelance as some of us call it. For me, life is all about living in your purpose and I know styling & design are apart of God’s plan for me so I decided to leave a comfortable position to take a shot at what I love and I’m so happy that I did. Read more>>

Mikaela Baltazar | Makeup Artist

I think risk taking is super important towards making significant growth and change in peoples’ lives and careers. Although taking risks really takes me out of my comfort zone, I know that they will somehow push me to be better and more knowledgeable in my career field. I now know that every time I am taking a risk, I will be rewarded regardless, whether that includes success or a valuable lesson. Read more>>

Holly “HaHa Holly” Logan | Comedian, Actress, Writer, Host and Content Creator

I think taking risks is a necessary evil. I recently took a risk by walking away from a 6 figure job with good benefits to purse my comedy and acting career. The job was the real risk. I was risking my health, happiness and life meaning. The best thing I have ever done is walked away from corporate America. Was it a big risk. Read more>>

Dani Van Buren | Hair Stylist

I believe risk taking is the best thing any creative can do! I’m actually very introverted, so sometimes I need to rely on that “ten seconds of courage” to get myself motivated to move forward. I feel like taking risks have always led me to better things, whether it’s moving beyond a comfort zone, or learning a hard lesson. I wouldn’t be where I am today without taking many risks. Read more>>

Starr Jarrard | Documentary Film Director/ Comedy Travel Blogger/ Litigation Solutions Director

I think risks are very important to take to achieve your goals. I think if you don’t take the chance that may be in the back of your mind you will always wonder what would happen if you had taken that chance. I think it is good to listen to that little voice in your head and go for it! And hey at least you know that you tried. Even if you fail, in my eyes that just means a better chance to succeed because the more times you fail will lead you to a yes. So that should encourage you not to be afraid to try. In sales, I always use that, the more No’s you get the closer you are to a yes. I also associate risk taking with getting out of your comfort zone. I think that is what I try to push myself most to do is to get out of my comfort zone, because that is where the magic happens. I think the risks I have taken have led me to where I am meant to be. I think the risk of traveling to Los Angeles by myself where I knew no one and to follow my dreams after working a full time job led me to directing my first documentary. Taking that risk to move here, has led me to my passions. I also think taking the risk of directing a documentary has led me to discover another passion which is directing documentaries that promote good change. Read more>>

Brian Thuok | Director, Designer, & Creative

For me, risk taking translates to creating your own opportunities: not taking the safe road in hopes of better results. I’ve always felt an urge to break out of the norm to find something of my own. Whether it was deciding to leave a comfortable job to create something new or spend hours of my free time investing in my own creative projects, I’ve always sought to create opportunities that wouldn’t have otherwise been handed to me. Read more>>