Are you a risk taker? Do you think you have a stronger appetite for risk relative to your friends and family? We asked some folks from the community about their approaches to risk and have shared their thoughts below.

Deshonte Jackson | Jewelry designer and Artist

For me, risk taking is everything. Why? because taking risk allowed me to recognize my potential. Being content and settling for the norm or the average scenario was not enough for me. I had to see what was on the other side. I had to believe in myself and I had to become fearless. When I made the decision to become self sufficient and start my own business as a entrepreneur, i had no idea what i was doing. It took a lot of prep talks to my self and a lot of thinking and rethinking. But at some point,I had to make a move. I had to challenge my self on rather or not I really believed I could do it. Read more>>

Thomas Hardy | Architect

No big advancement can happen without risk. Since we can’t really know the ultimate outcome of anything, the only way to move forward is by accepting some risk. But it’s important to be selective about what risks we take and to know as much as possible based on the level of risk before we take the leap. I may not think twice before trying a new food but would really prepare before hiking Everest or flying around in one of those awesome wingsuits. Read more>>

Xzaye | Music Artist

I think the theme of my Journey up until this point is, Risk. Taking risks to become a full time artist/creative, as well as a successful entrepreneur all in one whether it’s risk of Time, money, relationships, emotions, etc. has been the most difficult challenge of my life., as well as the most fulfilling, but it’s not for the weak of heart. My life’s work is to build the Xemplified Brand around my skill and talent as an artist. My dream is to touch the hearts of the world through music , through speech, through film, and through authenticity, and I Will not stop until that goal is fulfilled. I believe in ME, and I believe my artistry is my calling. Read more>>

Sarah Barnett | Interior Designer

The whole process of starting my business was one giant risk. As a completely self-funded venture, I was all in and all or nothing. While I am extremely organized and pragmatic, I am not afraid of a risk. The best advice I’ve been given, and words I repeat to myself at least once a day, is to trust your gut. Even if something feels like a risk, if your intuition is urging you on, you will seldom be disappointed. Read more>>

Nico Woods | Hip Hop Artist & Event Curator

As I’ve started to take my career more seriously I’ve definitely started to look at risk management differently. A bad use of a good opportunity hurts your brand more than ignoring the opportunity altogether. Realizing that has been a game changer. Preparation plays such a large part in everything I do now. Read more>>

Dexter Jordan | Singer/Songwriter

When I think about the word risk, I think of explaining yourself to any uncertain thing with full faith. It is something that is determined by a gut feeling. You do not have the final answer, but you are fully aware that whatever you may believe will happen. Risks have been very major in my career with being a singer/songwriter. I am the first in my family to be an artist professionally. My father is a minister of music in Atlanta, Georgia, and my mother would sing in the choir. So, I have a strong family background in music. Read more>>

Ziane Isis | Hair Care Line Owner & Hair Stylist

My outlook on risks? That’s tricky. I think risks can be both negative and positive depending on what the risk is and what position you are in life at that moment. However, I can only speak for myself so I’d have to say the risk that I have taken within this year have pushed me but for the better. And with each risk that I have taken this year has been so frightening. Like I would have moments where I would try to talk myself out of making the decisions I know for certain that needed to be made to get myself where I am now just because I was scared of a bit of change. I am happy to say I was able to snap out of that and I’m even happier to say taking those risks and challenging myself have been life changing. Read more>>

Jessica Santos | Celebrity Event Stylist/ Serial Entrepreneur /Creative

I think that life is a risk, Every thing that I have done has been risky. I worked in a prison, and a jail, where i never knew what the outcome would be when i went to work on a daily basis. When I decided to retire to pursue a career in the event industry, that was another risk. I believe that all entrepreneurs take risks, and if you want to succeed in life you must be willing to take risks and be ready for consequences. Taking risks has taught me lessons, The learn from your mistakes theory is nothing but facts. Im at a level because I took risks. When your scared to take risks, you remain at the same level you started at. Read more>>


Me personally i don’t think about the risk in business, I most definitely consider risk in life and in my career but had it not been for risk, i would not be in Georgia or even doing this interview.. I took a risk and moved to Atlanta with no job and a whole lot of faith. Chile my mom was furious. I was living in Florida in my grandmothers estate, rent free, complacent and not moving up in life. And I was comfortable with that. Guurl until I woke up and realized had to F5 my self, get out of Florida and remove myself from complacency. I was living rent free and driving my grandmothers paid for vehicle. No worries in the world, but i was still missing something. I was missing elevation in my career. As in life we take a risk by just walking outside so with life I’m a little bit more risk free. I try to choose my battles wisely when it comes to life per say Read more>>

Sharnice Orum | Owner

As far as risk taking, I feel it’s necessary to set you apart from any other business and/or person. I’ve taken several risk in my business and in all honesty, it has been worth it. Read more>>

Augusta Wheeler | Interior Stylist/ Hair Therapist

I think risk is a key component to being successful. Without risk you really can’t expand your mind. I like to do everything flying by the seat of my pants. Put it all out there…I find it always better when you just jump and a take that leap of faith. No one is going to love everything you do. So as long as you do everything with confidence you’re golden! Read more>>

Avery Oh | Textile Artist and Designer

I used to avoid taking risks, out of fear that I’d have to restart whatever I was planning for the next step in my life. I like stability. Probably the most impactful risk I’ve taken, apart from moving across states to attend SCAD, was changing my major to Fibers in the middle of my sophomore year. Changing majors, especially during the earlier half of college, might not seem like a big deal, but I had already spent months crafting this intricate plan to be able to graduate college a year early. Read more>>

Milton Taylor Jr | Owner/Marketing Genius And Promoter

Well you know the saying, it’s always great rewards in taking a risk but it’s all about knowing what risk you are taking and what comes with it. Taking risks has been apart of my life and career since I didn’t have the financial backing or full support you expect from people weather it’s associates, people you call friends, & family. So many opportunities came from the risks I took that I would have never seen, experienced, learned from, and built on without taking the risks I took to have a company of my own that’s beneficial to the music & entertainment world, brands and businesses small and big. Read more>>

Madeleine West | Illustrator & Aspiring Art Therapist

To me, risk is a necessity for any artist that aspires a creative career. I first experienced this when I began applying for my undergrad to a handful of different art schools. The Savannah College of Art and Design was at the top of my list, and I was lucky enough to get in, yet not without some concern from friends and family about choosing this path. They expressed to me the risk I already knew of following my artistic dreams. Yet, here I am five years later at the start of my Masters degree in the Art Therapy program at Drexel University. I couldn’t be happier that taking that initial risk of applying to art school would lead me down a path to a career where I will get to help others through creation. Read more>>

Jamal Sullivan | Artist & Entrepreneur

Risk taking is friends with business owners such as myself. I’ve endure a lot obstacles during my journey and still is in this exact time.
I had to sacrifice my time with family as well as certain hobbies to achieve the goal. Even when it comes to your health I had to take risk of lack step for a huge playoff. Going into unfamiliar places to get a better understanding of my business and environment. The biggest risk I’ve toking was stepping out of my comfort zone. Read more>>

Nathan Leonard III | Mobile Detailer

Risk is a word that many of us entrepreneurs are intimidated by. Risk has played a great factor in my career considering I practically started my company from the bottom. It took a risk to wake up one day and decide to start a mobile detailing business when I honestly knew nothing about washing cars. I have a degree in audio engineering and a love for producing beats; therefore, mobile detailing was the total opposite of my comfort zone. After doing research and practicing, I proceeded to spend the majority of my money on this business that I dreamt of starting. Read more>>

Aaron Brown | Videographer

This is one of the most interesting questions to me. Risk taking is one of the biggest battles I go through as a videographer. In this line of work, if you want to make it big, you kind of have to do a couple things you don’t want to really do. That can stem from the clients not having enough money to having to film the not so good artists. We all have to start somewhere. Business could get slow so to continue to keep the brand buzzing, I had to work for promotion. Free work has lead to doors that had made me more money in the long run and I saw the bigger picture. Read more>>

Diana Valencia | Entrepreneur

I have taken a lot of risks in my life so far. The first one was when I moved from Colombia to USA. Back then I did not speak the language so it was hard at the beginning. I also did not have any friends or relatives. Coming from tropical weather, my first winter was brutal (laughs). Eventually I adapted to the food and culture in general. My second major decision was to divorce after being married for almost 14 years. I finally had enough and I embarked on a new journey as a single mother. Read more>>

Jessica La’Nae | Mental Health Advocate & Content Creator

I wouldn’t be here in this space with you if I never took risks. When I think of risk for my brand I get excited, which to most the word “risk” sounds uneasy, not promising or harmful. Taking risk means growth, means even if the outcome isn’t what I envisioned, the process to get there was something I learned new. I know in order to gain as a mother, model, advocate and influencer taking risks are key in every position I play. In 2017 my life would change forever and in that moment I took the biggest risk of my life. I just purchased a new car was working as a manager for a retail store so life was good in my 20s. Read more>>

Chyna Renee | Founder & CEO

I’ve always been a very spontaneous person! Maybe even impulsive at times. I’ve never been afraid to fail. When I started my journey as an entrepreneur, the only thing I was 100% sure of was that I wanted to own something amazing… something different. I’ve always had a passion for helping people, but it took me a while for find my niche. As I was exploring different avenues of entrepreneurship, I remember many setbacks but later realized they were just lessons preparing me for a greater mission. Read more>>

Khalel (K.I.D.) Parsons | Music Artist

Risk is very important and can be beneficial as long as it’s calculated risk. It’s good to take a leap of faith with the right knowledge but can also be detrimental to go into a situation blind. Risk has taken a huge role in both my life and career. From a musical standpoint, taking risks has almost always benefited me. When I discover new flows/ways to approach a beat, it comes after the risk of switching my style and it potentially not having good feedback from my audience. Some of my biggest lessons also came after taking risks, whether the outcome be good or bad. Read more>>

Breyonia Barlow | Event Planner & Designer

Risk taking plays a major part in my life & career. If I’m being honest, it really all started when the pandemic started. I’m learning if there is no risk to take there is no happy fulfillment, you have to be fearless with risk taking. Taking risk in my personal life is hard!!! But the rewards are heartwarming. One of my biggest risk was being ok with being fired from my job and not going back into the 9-5 world. During this journey was scary, I didn’t know what to do but to just do it. I started event planning with little to no money asking family & friends to let me create their events then then the event is breathtaking for clients. Money comes in slowly but surely and bills start to pill up, but I have faith that the risks are going to pay off. Read more>>

Sean Ilenrey | Career Coach & Award Winning Executive

Throughout my career I’ve achieved a trajectory of success that has been uncommon especially at the period of my life that I achieved it. For example, I secured my first Executive role at the age of 28 years old. When taken into context, my peers were on average 20+ years older than me. When I am questioned about how I was I able to achieve that level as a young man and without a degree, I reference my three career principles: Read more>>

Lele Bad Bad | Female Rap Artist & Entrepreneur

My belief is no risk no rewards! Everything in life is about taking chances, sacrificing and risking certain things to get where you need to be. It’s like if you never take a jump you will never know how high, you can go if you don’t try. Life is a gamble everything is a risk it’s about are you strong enough to face the good or bad that comes with it all! Read more>>

Malaysia Turner | Atlanta Real Estate Agent

When I think of the word “risk”, I think of opportunity. Do risks scare me? Yes, sometimes. Do I still take them? Yes. My faith in God and the faith I have in my own skills help me settle in those risks a lot easier with a peace of mind. Throughout my working career, I’ve always tried new things. I went from wanting to be a model/actress to a Marketing career to wanting to be a doctor to wanting to be a CPA, etc. I was all over the place! I can honestly say that I’ve tried and invested in all of those things. Those were all risks, but I chose to see those investments as opportunities. Read more>>

Cameron Sepulveda | Social Media Strategist and Manager

If you asked me about risk prior to March of 2020, I would have said I was quite risk averse. I liked the idea of being an entrepreneur, but because of fear I still very much bought into the idea that I needed the job security of a corporate-type business structure where I could depend on the benefits, the perks, and the paycheck. Then on March 17, 2020 – the day before my 30th birthday – myself and around 900 other employees from the company I was working at were laid off due to COVID. Read more>>

Mj Troy | Recording Artist & Engineer

Taking a risks or not taking a risk to me is the difference between change and normalcy. When there’s a solid opportunity, I take it. If it’s not and I feel that it’s a risk for reward situation(depending on the situation) I’ll go for it. Taking risks has gotten me in rooms and places I knew I would one day be in. Sometimes taking the risk is how you access what you’ve spoken over your life. Read more>>

Marco DePrence | Podcast Host, Actor, Model

In my opinion, risk isn’t necessarily a negative thing it’s a necessity to advancing. Taking risks is what led me to being homeless at one point in my life. While this wasn’t an enjoyable part of my journey it was definitely something that needed to happen. I was living in Jacksonville, Florida back in 2016 and I lol decided to pack up all my belongings and move to Memphis Tennessee, because Florida just wasn’t working for me anymore. My time in Memphis was short as my living situation didn’t go as planned and I became homeless. This had a big impact on my life. Read more>>

Alexia Hunt | Atlanta Photographer & Biomedical Scientist

I have taken a lot of risks, especially when it comes to opening up to different communities and places across the U.S. and abroad. I have lived in Pennsylvania, Texas and now Georgia and I can honestly say that the differences in culture and landscape in general, are very, very diverse. I have taken risks in not only relocating but in my style of photography. I have made my shoots more personal, and it has always been my goal to create something that no one has yet, unique and one of a kind. When I sit back after editing and putting my creativity at full speed, it is endless and satisfying in what you are truly capable of. I am constantly searching for ways to tailor my work and my hobby into art. Read more>>

Daniel Oehrke | Owner of a reclaimed wood business

Risk-taking is not for everybody but you can be rewarded highly by taking the right risk. If I had not taken certain risks with my business and my life I would not have succeeded the way I did. My mentality is the risk makes sense if the profit margin allows, and the level of commitment, work ethic, and determination is high enough to bring to about results needed. I ask myself, am I committed enough to make this actually happen and if not I better get ready to. Read more>>

Bri Richards | Beauty Professional

As individuals we never really realize the hoops and loops entrepreneurs or business owner’s go through and the different risks businesses take. I was never a risk taker until I started my own business. Entering into a popular market, the beauty industry, is already risky itself because so many other individuals do the same thing. You have to consider what makes you different or what makes you unique enough to compete with not only the same types of businesses, but also like minded individuals. In addition to entering into this type of market, you are going to take financial losses and for me, that was not a risk I was willing to take, but it happened. Read more>>


I think of risk as an introduction to your potential, its the key point we get to that either changes our path permanently or maintain things as they. Not saying all risks will pan out positively however, taking risk especially a risk that involves betting on yourself will either reap rewards or a valuable lesson. I took a risk on myself to switch gears from my degree in psychology and randomly pivoted to project management right after college, where I’ve built a 10 year career in the IT field. The journey of entrepreneurship has introduced me to a side of myself I never new existed. In 2016 during my longest unemployment stint, I took a risk on myself and launched Teal & Moxie on an $800 unemployment check and it has easily been one of the best decisions of my life. Read more>>

Renelle | Creative & business owner

I used to be very afraid to take risks and have played most things safe in my life to a certain extent. It’s only been until this year, 2021 that I’ve started associating risk with reward. I took a few steps with my business trying things that were outside of my comfort zone (popup shops) and was greatly surprised at the turnout and it did wonders for my confidence when it comes to sales and putting myself out there more. What lead me to the idea that I needed to take more risks was having a partner who loves to take risks and it inspired me to try it for myself. Read more>>

Emily Roth | Visual Artist

Risks are the opportunities that come up which make life more interesting and exciting. Whether big or small, taking a risk pushes my limits and allows for a new path in the road, one that I may not have seen or thought of before. Sure, there is always a bit of uneasiness when a risk arises and creates a fork in that road, but there is a factor of trust in myself that allows for me to pursue this unknown territory. If I didn’t trust myself and my drive, I would be constricting my growth as a person and as an artist. Taking risks has allowed me to chase a passion and pursue it as a career. Read more>>

LaLah | Licensed Master Nail Professional

I think about risk as being the scary place that you “have to” go to when you’re about to make a life changing decision. The more afraid I am of a thought, the more I feel like it’ll be successful. No risk that doesn’t make me afraid is worth risking. That’s in regards to good risk, to clarify. Read more>>

Megan Gilchrist | Designer/ Jeweler

Taking risks have helped refine me over and over again. From not going the conventional route of a 9-5 and having security … it afforded me time to dive into my passion. But I also found that I could hustle so many different ways in order to stay afloat while pursuing and learning my craft. I changed the name of my business at least 4 times until I felt it suited what I was trying to achieve . I may have lost followers or maybe confused them but I knew it was important to build on something I loved from the name to the product. Read more>>