How do you think about risk? What role has taking risks played in your life/career?  Check out responses from hidden gems from our community below.

Gabriel Jacobson | Director of Photography/Owner – Storyteller Creative

I think we take far more risks than we realize. For instance, as much as putting yourself out there and swinging for the fences may be a perceived risk, holding back and playing it safe may be far more of a risk in the end. I’m making peace with the fact that essentially every decision is a risk, and I’m okay with that. The more and more I get to know myself and am comfortable with who I am, the easier it is to make snap decisions and know what risks are absolutely worth taking. I think I’ve gotten less and less stuck in my head, and more okay with greater “perceived risk” if it’s in line with who I am, and the way I’m supposed to be going. I think another pertinent example of risk I’ve been processing is my style artistically and visually. It’s really gritty, and it’s not necessarily marketable to everyone. I think I could be far more commercially “successful” if I had chosen to pursue a much more palatable and less niche visual style for the majority of my work. But I’m glad I haven’t, because no matter how “successful” or “unsuccessful” I might be to date, I am really proud of my body of work, and it is absolutely distinct and unique to the way I see the world. Read more>>

Natalia da Silva | Illustrator

I feel like risks are something that all artists have to be willing to take in order to be successful. Sometimes people won’t like what you create one day, but idolize it the next. Sometimes an artist is selected to be a vendor at an event, and they may not break even with their sales. I personally have experienced that risk , but most importantly, I’ve learned how to be vulnerable with expressing my feelings into my art. As someone who is an advocate and familiar with mental illness, I use to be very ashamed of how my mind worked, so putting my thoughts on a piece of paper was absolutely horrific to me! However, I believe that over the past 21 years of my life, society’s thoughts on mental illness have improved. When I was in middle school, depression , anxiety…whatever it may be, was unheard of. And yes, middle school was a time of adolescence so parents, teachers, and even the individual struggling may use that as an excuse. But because of that “easy way out” the issue may never be addressed. Read more>>

Amanda Hinds | Musician

I think about risk taking as a good thing. If there is something I am trying to achieve something then I am willing to take the risk. Risk motivates me to work harder and keep going. It has helped me build up myself and build up thick skin. I’ve learned that I will fail a lot before I succeed and that is okay. I am not afraid to take risks, many people call me brave and some say that I am doing too much but that is not how I see it. Taking risks benefited my life because that means I am commited to what I am focused on. I have no other choice but to push on and reach for the stars to get what I want out of life. I welcome risk taking. Read more>>

Sarah Mount | Professional Musician & Visual Artist

Risk is definitely comes with the territory as an artist and musician, and not only as a way to make a living, but also risking rejection along with so many other things. It is inherent and recognized though, so after the introductory decision to pursue this as a career, and a way of life, I actually don’t think about risk too much. I just try my best to make great choices, book my gigs, make my art, stay humble, and remain grateful for every single opportunity that comes my way. A legendary sax player that I love, David Sanborn, said it best; “You never get it figured out. You just keep playing.” Read more>>

 

Tony Liebetrau | Sound Supervisor / DJ

I’ve found that risk taking in life and risk taking in business are two entirely different things with a wholly separate criteria leveled for each. I’ve often found the greatest, most life-progressing lessons buried in the ashes of failure. A risk taken, converted slyly to a lesson learned (and hopefully applied later). For instance, I decided to try fly fishing because I heard it has Zen baked into its’ crust and also I live in Colorado and they’ll kick me out if I don’t attempt to fly fish at least once within my first decade of residency. Two hours into my quite expensive, guided fly fishing expedition, it dawned on me that, you know what, I’d rather just be out here sitting on a rock and enjoying the view. My hands are too clumsy and dull for the intricate work that tying a lure demands. I loathe the movement required to keep the fish interested in my fake bait and that my patience for staring is more “up at the sky” than “down under water.” And…that’s…okay. I took my risk, I discovered that I don’t care for fishing, I won’t make that mistake again. Read more>>

Sarah Kuiken | Freelance Writer, Ghostwriter & Editor

As a kid, I was very risk-averse. I wouldn’t do anything unless I was pretty certain I’d be safe. As an adult, I found that avoiding risks was keeping me stuck. Stuck in a corporate job I didn’t like, with no end in sight—at least, until I retired at age 65+. I couldn’t fathom living that way, so I started taking risks with both my career and my lifestyle. Travel is very important to me, so I bought a travel trailer and starting traveling full time while I was working. COVID-19 gave me the push I needed to take the ultimate risk (for me) and leave the corporate world for entrepreneurship. I’m so glad I did. There’s no guarantee of safety when you take risks, but I’m so much happier now than I was before. Read more>>

Mark Grove | Filmmaker & Martial Arts Teacher

I have always heard the term “No Risk No Reward” many times in my life and I really feel it has an enormous amount of truth to it. However, some people take this to the extreme and the idea is twisted to become risk for the sake of risk with no regard for what I believe is a crucial part of the equation. Vision and planning. There must be a guiding force and a method for moving forward. In this fashion the risk is still there, but it has been minimized as much as possible. That said, there have been many times I have thrown caution to the wind and just followed a gut instinct. Sometimes this is necessary based on circumstances in which a snap decision is required. I started my martial arts business in 1983 and my film career in 1989. Martial arts is much easier to navigate because it has structure, but working in the entertainment industry has been one risk after another. Even with good planning there is so many things that can go wrong when making a movie. Read more>>

Danielle Uhl | Success & Mindset Coach

Risks are the actions that kick-up all the “stuff” in our minds. It starts as an idea — it excites us and gets the blood pumping and the creativity flowing. As we think about it and consider taking action, it kicks-up the “what ifs,” worries, fears, and doubts within us. Which is where when then label it as a Risk. Risks are subjective — they are not fact. To me, risks have shown up in many ways in both my life and in my business. However, they have come to be some of my favorite and most fulfilling actions I have taken. When I began to pursue my passion for photography, the risk was starting my first business. When I was unhappy and unfulfilled in my cubicle corporate day job, the risk was deciding to leave. When it was taking longer to get my second business going, the risk was to keep trying. Did I know what I was doing? Was it possible? Was I making the right decision? What if I failed? Hell, what if I succeeded? In life, risks looked like walking away from toxic relationships and yet trying again, getting married. Read more>>