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.

Domenico Cicirello | Barber stylist

Risks have played a huge role in getting me where I am today and building my character. I’ve always been a risk taker-I never wanted to be average. I knew if I was scared of life bringing me down, I wouldn’t be able to get to where I want to be. I had to step up and overcome that fear of being swallowed in a new city, I knew that if I wanted to be the person I was saying I wanted to be, I had to not play it safe in the comfort zone and step out and gain these new experiences life has. I had the opportunity to come the city of Phoenix,AZ and decided to pursue my career of barbering out in the big city when I came out here I didn’t know anyone who lived in the city. Read more>>

Angie Woods | Professional Beauty Specialist, Beauty School Owner, Entrepreneur

When it comes to taking risks, I can testify there will be good rewards and lessons learned. I started my own business before I could have an alcoholic drink legally, I was young and optimistic. I attended cosmetology school while in high school, and graduated both at the same time. In my community many felt a college education offered more stability and financial freedom. Many college careers won’t allow freedom of expression as an artist. Read more>>

Ryan Hermansky | Co-owner of Noble Herb and Pure Edibles

From my perspective, it’s extremely difficult to grow personally or professionally if you aren’t willing to take risks. Whether it be small-scale or substantially large, my role as a business owner and entrepreneur involves taking risks on a continual basis. I identified early on in my career that working my way up the ladder for a fortune 500 company was not for me. I’ve always been passionate about building a business from the ground up. Read more>>

Jackman Raps | Recording artist & Producer

I live my life in a sorta high risk / high reward kind of way. Trying to make it as an independent artist is hard. If you don’t take the risk needed then you won’t get anywhere. I’ve never been afraid of taking a risk and I think I can credit some of my success to that. Read more>>

Sarah Robertson | Wedding and Elopement Photographer

When it comes to risk the first thing to always pop into my head is what if? What if I take the chance and it becomes something I have always dreamed of! What if it goes completely wrong and I fall on my face and I’m disappointed? Well you never fully know until you go for it and if that time comes guess what I get to learn a lesson and pivot myself into a better direction because that just wasn’t the right way for me to go. I am a huge overthinker as I think a majority of people are but I have also trusted my true intentions and have never been disappointed. I truly believe that what is meant to be will be. Read more>>

Ryan Yee | SWAT | Training Coordinator

In 2010, I became a Police Officer in a progressive and very busy agency in the Los Angeles County region. This is when the term, “risk” became a part of my daily life. In 2015, the stakes became even higher when I joined our SWAT Team, and Fugitive Apprehension Unit. Our primary duties were to apprehend violent and dangerous individuals who were actively on the run for violent crimes and often armed with weapons. Read more>>

Nichoelle Adler | Mindful Skin & Face

Taking a risk is probably the most important nerve wrecking rush of growth that everyone needs to experience in their lifetime. Stepping outside of your comfort zone and watching yourself learn, fail, exceed expectations, and take control of your life’s direction is an invigorating sense of self. Thinking back at the other risk taking moments in my life they have all been with starting small businesses and real-estate, each time with passion, with just enough support in my corner, and just enough motivation to prove certain people wrong. I can honestly say If I didn’t take a risk and if I didn’t put myself out there I wouldn’t have the success Mindful Skin & Face is having today. Read more>>

Allison Martin | Graphic Design, Copywriting, and Event Consultation

I have befriended risk, realizing that when we usually see “risk”, what we’re actually looking at is a reflection of our own fears. When I am faced with a “risky decision”, I realize that the answer I seek is within me, and what I really should be doing is inviting my fears to the table, thanking them for protecting me, and letting them go in peace. Risk is merely a perception, as risk naturally lives in the future. Read more>>

Rebecca Schuman | Social Media Manager

I think taking risks in life is so important. I truly believe if you are willing to take a risk or take a leap of faith, you will be rewarded. This risk, of course, must be backed up with hard work and dedication, however if you are unhappy in your current situation, you CAN change it. You just might be forced to take a risk to do so. Which is exactly what I did. I was extremely unhappy in my situation at the time, and so unhappy in my day-to-day routine- and I was SO SCARED to take the risk. However, one day I decided I was ready for the risk and I knew if I never took it, I would regret it forever. I always think about the quote, “What if it ends up turning out better than you could’ve ever imagined”. I live by that- and if the risk you takes doesn’t work out, you can always pivot and make a change again. Read more>>