I don’t think I know many risk takers. That’s through no fault of the people I know, though. If you went to college or educated yourself in other ways, if you’re ambitious, if you’re clever and can pull off most anything you try, then you’re not really ever taking risks. To me, riskiness involves uncertain, (to a degree) uncontrollable and potentially unfavorable outcomes with permanent, even life-changing consequences. Sounds bad, right? That’s because it IS. A risk isn’t:

“Will I give up a $200k a year job to potentially make $500k, but if I don’t do it, I’ll go back to 200, or, at worst, 150?”

No, it’s:

“I’m going to Hollywood to wait tables for twenty years in hopes and go on auditions whenever I can in hopes of making it.”

Most of the people I know would never do that. Even the ones who are talented enough to not be ridiculous. It’s because they chances of it working out are terrible, and if it doesn’t, they’ve lost substantial chunks of their lives. Terrible, right?

Not really. When you think about it, it’s actually liberating. If you’re worried about being risky, stop and think: will whatever choice you make in a given situation potentially result in something life-changingly awful? Are you unable to rebound? Is there any significant chance you won’t be able to make it work to your satisfaction?

Chances are the answers to all of these questions are no. You’ll be fine. Once you realize “risk” is an illusion, you get to relax and just have fun.

Ugh, these are too serious. I need to get funnier again.

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