We had the good fortune of connecting with Mindy Jaffar and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mindy, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
Risk is not solely a gamble where if it goes well, you win or if it doesn’t go well, you lose everything For me, risk ran concurrent with security as I made my choice to enlist into the United States Navy. Even more so as I re-enlisted raising my right hand and John Hancocking the enlistment document time after time as a single mother. Every time, I committed to donning a uniform, working wherever and whatever capacity I was told to do so, and ultimately swearing to give my life to our country and freedom in war or peacetime. This was incredibly risky because if i deployed and went to war, I would’ve had to consider my daughters living arrangements, her emotional stability without her mom, and if I would come home or not. But, I also gained financial security knowing I would receive a paycheck even if the country hit an economic downfall, which it did. I always had a home, food, and medical provisions. As I watched many American’s file for bankruptcy and lose their home and life savings, my daughter and I were stable. I experienced safety and risk simultaneously for 20 years. I believe we always collectively experience some sort of safety and risk. If we don’t take the “risk” we actually risk being unfulfilled, not living in our purpose but we maintain security of what is known and comfortable. Really the two are unavoidable.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I write. I write True Crime and am working on my True Crime/Memoir, I write blog posts and non-fiction stories based on oral narratives I collect. I wrote poetry in High School and journaled my prayers and ambitions for years. It was since leaving the Navy that I discovered writing as a natural passion and tool for me to express my thoughts and desires. The greatest lesson I’ve learned with writing is to be authentic. This will attract the right audience and weed out the people who will not appreciate, understand, or relate to your content. The second thing I learned was who my audience is. It took time but it’s so important. Come over to mindyjaffar.com and there is a space to share your story too!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
My best friend is coming to visit and I want to show her the places I love. We would go to hot yoga at “The Yoga Spot.” We would hike South Mountain and also plan a trip to Antelope Canyon where we would paddle board and hike. We would devour sushi at Blue Wasabi in Gilbert and for good pizza we’d head downtown Phoenix to Cibo’s. For a lunch outside and good glass of wine, we would drive to the Queen Creek Olive Mill and for more fun, we’d spend time in Sedona. Oh, and for a quick and cute outfit, we’d hit up “The Lifestyle Co.”
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I always say that two things saved me; God and the Navy. The Navy grooms every Sailor to be a leader and one of the things I’ve learned about leadership is that achievement and success is never mastered alone. Every setback, heartache, and every “no” was just as relevant as the awards and accolades. Books, leaders, coaches, and experiences are all important factors but what I found to be really important was doing what I am called and desire to do and believing it will work if it’s supposed to.
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Emma Burcusel Jenn Sutton