Legend holds that Cornelius Vanderbilt had built a massive fortune in the steamboat shipping industry, but then realized the railroads were the way of the future and invested almost his entire net worth into railroads. The gamble paid off and made Vanderbilt one of the wealthiest entrepreneurs ever. But risks are inherently…risky. How do you think about risk and how has it affected your life and career? Some of our community favorites share their perspective below.

Alexis Rheinwald-Jones | Owner & Designer, The Source Apparel

Coming from a healthcare background, I can’t help but think of risk through the lens of regret. I have sat with enough people at the end of their lives to know that nobody looks back and says, “I sure am glad that I never pursued that risky thing I was interested in.” I feel scared all the time in my business. There’s so much about it that isn’t natural for me. But when I feel that way, all I have to do is think back to the dying patients I’ve talked to. Nobody is glad that they didn’t give their dreams a shot. My goal is to live a life driven by creativity and to create a positive change around body image, sustainability, and the way working people are treated. My business is my current, best attempt at doing that. Read more>>

Chloe Mecina | Owner of Nail Fluff Nail Studio Pasadena, CA

Risks are amazing! Risks get me out of my comfort zone, and anytime I’m uncomfortable I know that I’m on my way to that next open door. If I never took risks I wouldn’t be where I’m at today. Building a brand and a business can be so scary, and you question your sanity sometimes! If you never take the risk you’ll never see the reward. Read more>>

Lucy Drew | Writer, Director, Actor, Producer

The word, “risk,” gets a bad rap. We hear it, we panic, and then we book it back to our safety net. “I would never do something risky,” You already have honey! Risk is inevitable. You might not be a base jumper, but I bet you’ve asked out a hottie or zipped through a stale yellow light on the way to a meeting. Whether anyone is cognizant of it or not, you can not do life without doing risk. When I was seven, I went off of a rope swing for the first time. It was at camp, and despite watching a myriad of girls go before me and successfully hit their water landing, I was scared past shitless. I knew I was safe. I had the proof, but I didn’t know the feeling of going off a rope swing. I had no clue what to expect. Everyone around me was doing it, taking the leap AND coming back for more. Still I did not want to jump. I knew I was going to have to, because the line behind me was building at an alarming rate and the biddies were getting pissed as hell. Still, I drug it out thinking somehow that might help. Read more>>

Erica Alvarez Castro | Founder & Owner, Spiritual Lifestyle Co.

When I think about a risk, I try to trace it to its source. Ie. where is this idea / risk coming from? Is it an impulsive risk? Or more importantly, is it coming from a place of higher thinking and feeling within me? Is it coming from a calm, divinely guided place? An impulsive risk can be small, and fun! And if you don’t have too much to lose, well why not take it? But, if the risk is much greater, say like leaving a stable 9-5PM at the beginning of a global pandemic and potentially losing a lot of money (as was the case in my journey), then you really have to stop, think, feel, and essentially figure out where exactly the idea is coming from. Personally, I kept tuning back into the idea / risk, and it felt so right and divinely guided, that I trusted my gut and went with it. Now, that doesn’t mean that it was smooth sailing from there… It just means that every time that I had doubts, I could go back to that place of knowing that all would be right. Read more>>

Wendie Weldon | Health and Mindset Life Coach

I have found that when sensations of something new stir within me, risk is right around the corner. Risk calls me out of what is comfortable and familiar and forces me into unchartered territory. One of the original words for risk is Rysigo. Its meaning was correlated with business ventures, “to dare, to undertake, to enterprise”. To me, taking risks means being bold, defying the odds, taking on new challenges, and most importantly, taking action. Risk is the change point. It is the moment of resolve, taking the first step through the door of opportunity that presents itself. When I was twenty-two years old I moved out to Los Angeles by myself. I didn’t have a job lined up, I only knew one person, and I had $6,000 in my bank account. Some might call that reckless not risky, but something had been stirring in me for a long time, and I had to see what possibilities were available to me if I opened myself to them. Read more>>

Darielle Loprete | Entrepreneur

Taking risks is the reason I am where I am today. I’ve never been afraid to go after what is hard or better yet, what is different. It’s simple to pick the safe route, to do things that everyone else is doing…but for me, I was always like “NO. I want more. I can achieve any and everything I put my mind to. No matter how hard it is, eventually I will succeed.” Everything is about taking a risk. Read more>>

Jonathan Mosqueda | Drag Artist, Influencer, and Public Figure

I think taking the risk is what we should all consider doing. Taking risk not only helps individuals grow within themselves, but it can and most likely open opportunities. I often think to myself, if I don’t take a risk I’ll only be one of many dreamers, plus you only live once. Read more>>

Hannah Stouffer | Director, H+ Creative

There have been very few moments where I knew exactly what I was doing, where I felt comfortable, like things were easy, felt like I was the most experienced or completely well versed in what I was signing on for. I’m usually totally diving in, focusing more on the challenge then the discomfort, learning as I go, guessing with confidence and telling myself that I can figure it out, because I can. My careers have been based off the risks of saying yes, rather than maybe, or I don’t think I can. You always can, sometimes it just might be a completely new, unfamiliar territory- and that challenge to overcome and follow through and succeed is the best part. Read more>>

Monica Soe | Owner of Aseity LLC

Everything new in life is a risk. Think about it, when a child learns to crawl and then to walk, that child is taking a risk. If we don’t take risks, we never learn. That being the case, taking risks has been a very important role in my life. I’ve always been a pretty headstrong person in general. I always go all in when I do something new because if I don’t, then I don’t really ever feel fully invested. Read more>>

Adam Lee | Winemaker and Winery Owner

Risk taking apparently comes naturally to me. At the age of 15 and in 1911, Clarice Hosea (my grandmother and the person Clarice Wine Company is named after) was engaged to be married to the son of the pharmacist in the small town of Giddings, Texas. For her family, this would be quite the step up in social status. But she fell in love with a 21 year old farmer, Pleasant Phears, and they would leave notes for one another underneath a rock near a creek in town. As her 16th birthday and wedding day simultaneously approached, she and Pleasant decided to elope and, two days before her birthday, they ran away on horse and buggy to Dime Box, Texas (16 miles away). Her brothers and father found out about their elopement and chased after them, but it started raining and so they were unable to catch up to them. Clarice and Pleasant were married 67 years. Read more>>

Taninna Oukacine | Actor, Comedian and Singer

Risk taking is a very fascinating topic to speak about and discuss . For me risk taking is a huge, HUGE part for achieving success. For instance we all grow up and have our dreams, hopes and aspirations. The way we achieve our goals and accomplish them is by the amount of risks we are willing to take. A lot of people have the type of mindset where they think they should just always try to play it safe; to always “color and stay within the lines”. Now I can see how this type of thinking may seem easier, less risky, not as stressful but I am a strong believer that anything you set your mind to, no matter how risky it is one can achieve anything. It is all about the type of mindset you have and how much you are willing to work to achieve your dreams. Two of my favorite quotes are “Impossible stands for I’m Possible” and “Dream without fear. Love without limits.” I live by these quotes and take them account into my daily life. I am always ready to take a risk no matter how scary it is because we never know what possibilities it could lead to for the future. Read more>>

Paige Compton | Film Director / Writer

I am ALL about taking risks. Big ones. Risks that make people around me think I am crazy. One doesn’t become great by playing it safe. As they say, the greater the risk… the greater the reward. In those inevitable times that the risk doesn’t work out and you fail… count your blessings, you have just learned more about your goal and yourself then you ever would have if you had succeeded at it. This is how I have lived my entire life. I don’t take random risks. I take calculated (as much as I can calculate it) risks. I usually know which risk to take by tapping into my intuition and letting that inner voice guide me. I call it my premeditated reckless abandon. Life is entirely too short to wait on the sidelines for something safe to come around. Take the leap… you’ll either land it or you’ll clear it from your path so you can focus on the next risky move. Read more>>

Eddie Kelly | Dick Clark’s “American Bandstand”

My feelings about risk taking is that everyone takes risks every day of their life. My father took a great risk when he had to decide to adhere to a decision made by the principal of my Catholic High School to either not attend school any longer because I attended a Television Program called Dick Clark’s “American Bandstand.” ;That was 1959. Rock N Roll Music was considered at that time the Devil’s Music. Believe it or not. My dad said the Catholic Church will not tell my son what he can or cannot do. The decision was made. I left and attended a Business School and later got my GED certificate for graduating from a regular High School. That decision changed my life forever. I became a teenage celebrity from dancing on American Bandstand. Once I was interviewed by Dick Clark because of a letter received by a viewer that I looked exactly like her son who was in the Air Force stationed in Pakistan I started to receive fan mail, fan clubs were established. Read more>>

Brian Fox | Technical Director, Media Pollution

The fantasy is that you go all in to your art, spend 24/7 on it and “make it happen” But the reality as we see it, is that it’s way too freaking risky. In fact, we find that because we have day jobs we can take risks that otherwise wouldn’t be an option if every dime you made had to come from art. Don’t get us wrong, yeah we’re definitely trying to get to a place where the day job is not really needed, but I think along the way having a plan B and maybe even C has REALLY helped keep plan A a float. I think fomo culture really makes you think it’s gotta happen now, when in reality we want a 50 year career and it’s ridiculous to think you’re gonna have all the tools and make the right decisions when you’re just getting started. So having the cushion/backup helps a lot. Read more>>

Hal Masonberg | Live music Photographer & Filmmaker

Risk-taking in artistic expression is at the core of what I am most drawn to capture and engage in. As a music photographer, I specialize in improvisational music-making. Primarily jazz and jambands. Taking any creative endeavor to new and unexplored spaces is, for me, one of the most spiritual and rewarding experiences. There’s a place musicians go – artists of all kinds, actually, but in the case of my photography work, it’s mostly musicians – when they let go of ego and allow themselves to enter into unknown and unexplored spaces that reflect that particular moment in time, that setting, the particular musicians they are playing with in that moment, when the music becomes a deep conversation and, eventually, it’s no longer musicians playing music, but music playing the musicians. When the music plays the band, as they say. To be in the presence of those moments, to be taken on that journey, for me, is everything. Then to be able to capture those moments in another art form. Read more>>

Mirette Seireg | International & Food Security Expert (Ret.) and Owner & Pres. of Mpath Music (Custom & Production Music)

Risk is in my DNA. Born in Cairo to an Egyptian Muslim father and an American Jewish mother in the midst of the Suez Crisis / Arab-Israeli War. I was just an infant when my parents escaped to Lebanon and made their way back to the US on a single engine airplane with $10 dollars in their pocket and one small suitcase. Growing up I delighted in climbing up the face of a cliff, flying through the air and diving into our shallow backyard swimming pool. Scaling up church rafters to a bell tower, with no guardrails, revealed glorious bird’s eye views. SCUBA diving through walls of pristine coral reefs off of the Yucatan Peninsula with sharks, through schools of dolphins and brilliantly colored schools of fish was, well, breathtaking and fun!. Read more>>

Genesee Nelson | Songwriter & Composer

RISK is a word I’ve had on my desk for years now… It can mean so many different things.mAt times, “risk” can elude to something dangerous or negative… it’s important to evaluate every situation, making sure the pro’s and con’s are considered, and that there is nothing dangerous or harmful involved. However, not everything can be “planned” and that’s when I see this word meaning: potential Risk has granted me many opportunities and experiences. It’s about pushing the limits, and embracing the courage to face what’s on the other side. Read more>>

Tammie Valer | Music Photographer

Without even knowing it, I’ve been taking risks since the day I decided to work in a creative field. I was told at a very young age that music and art are not sustainable careers and was discouraged to pursue them. I have acquired many skills because, for many years, I was always undecided on what path to follow. I dabbled in web design, graphic design, and art curation while doing photography. I finally admitted to myself that my passion lay with photography. It wasn’t until I lost my full-time graphic design job that I took the leap to pursue my photography career full time. I traded stability for uncertainty. Taking that risk has changed my life completely. I was never meant to work in an office, furthering other people’s businesses. I needed to further my own career. All the decisions I made involved certain risks along the way. I was encouraged to pursue wedding, fashion, or high-end e-commerce photography. I tried nearly all avenues. Read more>>

Haiden McGill | Audio Engineer & Creative Technologist

It’s a funny thing, even after going through the process of co-founding a company fresh out of college, I wouldn’t say that I’m so much a risk taker as I am an opportunity maker. I have always found myself gravitating towards emerging technologies and industries that have just began to form, where more questions are being asked than answered. That is where the real opportunity lies, especially when you can find a way to pair that with your passions. Read more>>

Jesse Lee | Nonprofit CEO

Taking risks is unnatural. No one enjoys encountering danger or a possible failure. But there are times when we have to take risks. There are moments we decide to take a step into the wilderness of uncertainty and threats. That is when we want something desperately. Despite all the foreseeable terrifying circumstances that we may enter into, we choose to carry out what we envision because we desire. I run Street Company, a nonprofit organization that I founded with my homeless friends in 2017. We wanted to create an organization where homeless people take ownership of the entity, not where they become mere recipients of services. We thought it was the sense of pride, confidence, achievement, and purpose, not material resources, lacking in homeless individuals. The continuous one-directional infusion of resources into “the homeless” actually ostracized them from the opportunity to serve others, contribute to the community, and feel meaningful. Read more>>

Taj | Metal Vocalist for Fused by Defiance

I believe taking risks are essential to success. In our opinion a risk is simply a plan no one has discovered yet. This mindset comes from an out of the box cognition which fuels Fused by Defiance’s decisions on music in general. As risk takers we are aware of the high rewards that come with the gamble and the massive failure it could lead to however we are brave enough to accept the challenge. I personally took a risk in joining FxD. Upon Audition the only vocals I knew how to do were rap vocals. The boys blatantly asked if I could do singing and screaming vocals and instead of saying no, I took a chance on myself and confirmed these were vocal types I could do. Ironically once I took that chance, the sheer crisis of the situation propelled me to learn these skills rather quickly and it’s allowed us all to expand our music versatility. Because I’m relatively impulsive, I generally make quickly calculated risks and have been able to advance faster in all aspects of my career. Read more>>

Katherine Tanner Silverman | Artistic Director, Collaborative Artist and Deviser

We try to reframe risks as opportunity that is shrouded in fear. We attempt to challenge that fear with courage, optimism and planning. It’s all a matter of perspective and how you choose to manage it. That being said, Katherine, our artistic director, is definitely the risk taker, and Mike our managing director is the one who tries to be risk-averse, which can be beneficial when you’re attempting to find balance in a new organization. As far as risk prior to establishing Mentalhaus, we agree that in our early careers we abstained from taking risks because fear of failure, criticism or going down the wrong path rendered us immobile. In reality we had not yet recognized that the “wrong” path could lead to the “right” path as it is never too late to change directions. Knowing this minimizes the threat level and recontextualize the idea of risk taking as opportunities to grow, even in our perceived failures. That’s something we would love to be able to tell our younger selves. Read more>>

Sydney Burger | Actress & Dancer

I think taking risks are a vital part of life. I see risks as opportunities to grow and expand. It can definitely be scary to step outside of your comfort zone but getting comfortable in the uncomfortable has been crucial in my journey as a creative. What I have learned and what I still need to remind myself daily is that the real risk is not taking any risks at all because until you push yourself past what is familiar we will never find our greatest potential. Risks have played a huge part in both my life and career. Moving across the country from New Jersey to Los Angeles was definitely an intimidating thought but I knew this is where I had to be to support the career I wanted to have in the entertainment industry. So taking a chance on myself and my dreams and moving so far away from where I grew up was a risk I had to take! I moved here with the intentions of gaining a BFA in Commercial Dance. Read more>>

Tijera S. Williams | Multimedia Artist, Photographer, Painter

When it comes to taking risks, I actually think that I am on both sides of the spectrum. While I don’t believe in petty gambling or the lotto, I do believe that taking risks in life when it comes to your career, what you do in life, or taking on anything that you want to accomplish. It’s definitely crucial that you take them. In my life and career, I have taken many risks. I risked my livelihood and gambled with fate while being homeless in college to get my art degree, I gambled in love by choosing to get married to the then love-of-my-life at 21, and gambled with the potential chance of failure in art by literally inserting myself into it. I made myself my model and center of my artwork, which is an extreme risk that I take every time I create a new piece. My goals that I have accomplished and the success that I have received from this is most likely and truly attributed to risks that I took to reach this point. Read more>>

Martin Mamangun | Visual Artist: Filmmaker & Photographer

I believe risk is a key aspect of navigating through life. It’s not only necessary for growth, but it’s also natural in the sense that risks need to be taken just as decisions, actions, and sacrifices all need to be made daily. Undoubtedly, taking risks can be scary whether there is much thought and calculation to it or you don’t think about it and you just do it. I tend to go about it both ways given that I’m constantly trying to be one step ahead, but also the fact that I can be very “down” and impulsive. Regardless, I trust my intuition and those gut feelings when it comes to being a risk taker. At the end of the day you never know how it’ll pan out until you try it. I never want to have regrets or hang my head over the hypotheticals of “what if” and “what could have been,” but instead I’ll choose to look back at those instances where I took a leap of faith and no matter the outcome, I can say with confidence that at least I tried and took something out of it. Read more>>

Kristie Martin | Entrepreneur

I think people have a negative view on what the word “risk” really means. I think risk can mean something so different for so many people. For me, risk is something that comes natural because without risk what is life? I mean, if you really think about it, everything is a risk. Crossing the street is a risk, eating can be a risk if you choke, sleeping is a risk, what if you don’t wake up? Living is a risk. So, I like risks because I love to live. Some of the best memories I have made or some of the best decisions I have made have all and I mean ALL have been a risk. I built a restaurant in the middle of the Tulum jungle leaving everything I had in LA behind. Everyone that is scared of “risk” told me I was crazy, that I should be more careful, installing fear without even knowing that it is risk that makes you do GREAT things! If we are fear driven or listen to fear driven people we will always be scared. But, if we take risks, live and just go for it, no matter what it is, you will build an empire or at-least great memories. Read more>>

Itay Amram | Composer for Media

Throughout my first year in LA, I was fortunate to compose and assist on projects for Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, Apple TV and more. Most of these opportunities were born out of random encounters in bars and parks. None of them was predictable but all of them were possible only by countless thoughtful risks I took, such as investing time and money, seeming like a fool with limited English, and relocating far from my home in Israel. I believe that risk-taking is a crucial tool for expanding our comfort zone and growing. We love hanging in this cozy zone, over a solid ground of certainty and control. But as we build grand careers or deep relationships we find that to grow beyond its border, we must get out of it. We must take risks, face failures and learn from them. It must feel uncomfortable, otherwise, we’re probably still inside it. With courage, knowledge, and persistence, the outer zone becomes more familiar and comfortable, then we settle in, draw a new border and expand our comfort zone. Read more>>

Masan Yi | Visual Effects & Motion Graphics Artist

Being a risk taker in our creative industry crucial especially for me because I’ve always worked as a independent contractor. Of course I’ve had a staff position before but 99% of my 20 year journey has been a freelance artist. The life of a freelancer is a risk in itself because you always have to be on your toes and expect the worst in any situation. The moment that I graduated college and entered into the professional world I feel that I had no other option but to be a risk taker and run with the odds against me among thousands of other newly graduating students. Way back when I got my first freelance job I lasted about 4 weeks and I was let go because they didn’t need my help anymore, but the still remember exactly how painful it felt to be thrown back out to the streets of LA not knowing what my next project will be. That was one of the hardest things I ever felt professionally and I never liked how that felt. Read more>>

Valeria Sweet | Actress/Filmmaker + Dream Life Mentor at TheSweetPost.com

I’m always taking leaps of faith when it comes to my life and career. I wouldn’t be in US, I wouldn’t be in LA, I wouldn’t be an actress/filmmaker if I didn’t risk it all. One of my favorite quotes, “If you want something you have never had, you must be willing to do something you have never done.” I see it as inevitable if you want to live your dream life. There’s nothing that I haven’t done that didn’t lead to a great result when stepped off the ledge of possibility and let God and the Universe catch me. You put your trust in what’s ahead and take that trust fall — it’s very, very important. Whether it’s investing in yourself before you know how it will pay off, putting your script or film out there for critique, or putting out a book or a course to find its audience. Trusting a new friend or colleague, betting on a new partner — you just have to continually put yourself out there and that’s what it’s been for me. As a Russian proverb says, “Who doesn’t risk, doesn’t drink champagne.” Read more>>

Andrew Carothers | Photographer | Videographer

Taking risk is necessary especially in building your own business. Many times I’ve taking a chance on free work and it usually paid off in the long run, Turning free client into gaining the account. You need to build trust with your future client. I also had left a secured job I was at for 12 years to pursue my own path. Taking risks, makes you grow. It puts you in uncomfortable situations and makes you become comfortable with them. You just simply look at life and the opportunities you get and you’re grateful. Read more>>

Gilly Moon | Sound Designer, Audio Engineer, Storyteller and Collaborator

I dislike yet embrace risk! I’m someone who loves to have a game plan, which is great work-wise because it means I always communicate and show up prepared. But! I did choose a life in production, and I love how much it has forced me to get used to pivoting direction on a dime, just by the nature of the job. Taking risks 100% got me to where I am today. I started in audio in 2009 as an intern in the sound department at a regional theater company. I got paid $75/week plus housing. Even with housing provided I was still paying my own bills and buying my own food, so that was not a lot. However, I knew that’s what I needed to get started. I went for it and figured out the whole, you know, surviving thing as I went. After that year, I bounced around from city to city wherever the work was, and eventually boat to boat when I worked on cruise ships. Read more>>

Anthony Frederick | Filmmaker / Editor

I love how no matter where you are in your process, you’re always a student of risk. As someone who is in deep recovery from a decade of over-analyzing my reality, overthinking every choice I made, overplanning to the point of paralysis, trying my damndest to live a logical, rational existence, at some point, I finally began to understand risk-taking as simply what you do when you are living your life instead of thinking about it or planning it. It was important for me to connect that understanding at such a base level because we currently have a broad culture that does at least two things very well. One, it exacerbates an addiction to a delusional sense of security, so you start believing something is better or more desirable the less it exposes you to risk. So it generates overwhelming risk-aversion, and second, to the same degree in the opposite direction, it exults people who produce amazing results by calling them risk-takers. Read more>>

Ari Abramczyk | Freelance Fashion Photographer

In my experience, risk is a part of the photography business every day. It’s a risk putting yourself out there, and cold emailing/calling potential clients and collaborators. It’s a risk doing editorials, which not only don’t pay most of the time, but that you sink money into as an investment in your portfolio and relationships. It’s a risk when you start a personal project that takes your energy, resources and time, and I always wonder if it’s worth it. I try to just keep going, and believing that it’s worth it and it will work out for the best!. Read more>>

R.A. Hemsley | Writer, Director, & Producer

The film industry is risky business. Honestly, it’s designed that way. My entire career in the creative space so far has been one long story of risk. As a writer and director, I risk people ridiculing my work, or risk not having a stable income. As a producer, I risk tainting my reputation on a project, or even wasting other people’s money and time. Indeed, every time I create a script and see it through to completion then send it out into the world, there is no certainty of whether it will become profitable, be appreciated, or turn into what I had intended. However, over the years of my building a business as a writer/director/producer, I have decided to approach this challenge of the Industry with a different perspective. When I “calculate” risk, if you will, the answer always comes out the same: either I put myself out there and this particular opportunity or path doesn’t work out, or I could have the time of my life and accomplish something extraordinary. Failure is truly in the eye of the beholder. Read more>>

Harris Goldberg | Screenwriter/Director

First, I’m not a fan of risk. I hate it. It scares me. BUT… it’s a part of every aspect of existence. From any decision to walking across the street. I live with the uneasy feeling. That it’s always out there, waiting to strike. I also know, without taking quite a lot of it, I would never have succeeded in the entertainment business. I took the risk of moving from Canada to Los Angeles. I took the risk of working without any income. I took the risk of doing it alone. The risk of calling agents, managers, buyers, studios, networks cold. The risk of writing original material on spec. For a fellow who despises risk, every step has been fraught with some kind of risk. Sometimes it paid off extraordinarily. Sometimes it failed miserably. Sometimes I made the completely wrong decision. Sometimes I was in the right place at the right time. There was no certainty. Ever. But I also had no choice. If I wanted to compete in the business, make movies my life, I HAD to take the ongoing risks. Was there a price to pay? Absolutely. Good and bad pay-offs. All you can do is keep your eye out for it, accept it when it happens, enjoy it when it pays off, quickly move on when it nails you. Read more>>

Araina Hollaway | Life Coach & Producer

I think of risk as an inevitable part of life, when you pursue your dreams and what you truly know is best for you (and your family). Taking risks has led me to become the woman, mother, and wife I am today. I took a risk when I moved to Los Angeles several years ago. Before I left the East Coast to move out here, I knew people, who said things like, “you know the unemployment rate is really high there?” and “Good luck,” among other not so positive things. And when they said “good luck,” it wasn’t in the most confident or positive tone you want to hear from those you care about when you’re making a huge life decision. I understand that my friends were concerned about me, but their concerns and kind of “doomsday” mentality could have really deterred me from making the move. However, I knew in my heart that it was the right thing to do. I didn’t have a job when I moved to L.A., and I didn’t have any friends or close family who lived here. I had only visited the city a handful of times in the past, and although I had done as much research as I could, I was still nervous when I arrived here. Read more>>

Claudia Wong | Nurse Practitioner, Yoga Teacher, Sound Healer, and Co-Founder of Mindful Nurses

In 2018, I left a great full time job working in dementia care as a Nurse Practitioner with a well known healthcare system to follow my desire to explore and travel. I had previously met others that traveled for many months and years from other countries and knew that was not the norm in the United States. Seeing as though I did not have other strong commitments in the California at that time, I figured it was always going to be a difficult and scary leap to take into the unknown, but that it that no great of a time to do so. Once I made my decision, I felt liberated and relieved and it felt aligned with what I was supposed to do at the time. My co-workers were actually quite excited for me and for my upcoming ahead. Read more>>

Victor Yuen | Designer

Honestly, the biggest risk is betting that tomorrow should mean anymore to us than today. When I started to comprehend “promises” versus what exists in the present, I realized the least risks in life come in this moment. So all my chips are placed on betting on my current actions today/now as I pursue what carries meaning… This only leaves opportunity for greater meaning in what lies for tomorrow. Read more>>