Take a Risk!

By Hyperlog

In a way I’ve always played it safe.  Okay, maybe not most peoples definition of safe.  I did move to Hong Kong for work for a year when I had never been to Asia.  I did go on solo voyages to exotic sounding places like Morocco, Laos, and Hungary.  I did sell all my belongings except what I could fit into two suitcases and spend 6-months traveling for work around the US before finally landing a home in San Francisco.  Safe?  Maybe that isn’t the right way to put it.  Maybe the right term is responsible.  I have held a job steadily since I turned 20.  For the past 13 years, I have only left a position when I had something else lined up.  I have lived within my budget and not accrued debt.  I have never been fired and I have stayed in positions for the long-term.  So yes, responsible and safe.  Until now.

By Danielle LaPorte

I am 33-years-old and I am a buyer for a national catalog.  This is the kind of job that women dream of, the kind of job that when you tell people what you do it elicits responses like, “You’re so lucky!” and “I would love to do that.  How did you get that job?!”.  Instead of being content with my position and career, I have decided to quit my job, move to Paris, and go back to school for my MBA.  Oh, and did I mention that I don’t speak French?  But I will.  I’m learning.  This decision isn’t safe and it isn’t responsible; I will be taking on a huge amount of debt and subjecting myself to an uncertain future.    It is however thrilling, core-shaking and absolutely the right choice for me to make.  You know the certainty you feel when you follow your heart and you just know deep down in your core that what you are doing is the right thing for you?  I feel that.  I know this is right.  That doesn’t mean I’m not scared.  I’m terrified!  But there are no guarantees in life and sometimes you have to risk it all in order to go where you were meant to be.

Dream Big

I recently decided to make a huge change in my life.  I am quitting my job and moving to Paris to pursue an MBA because… j’adore Paris!  It is one of the biggest risks I have taken in my life but this post is not really about that.  Instead I want to talk about what happened when I finally decided to take this risk and follow this dream that I had never even dared to dream before.

As soon as I made the decision to follow my dreams,  it was like the universe was coming together to help me realize my dream.  My writer friends helped me edit my admission essays, my girlfriends patiently listened to my interview presentations, my mom helped me with the financing so that I have a good interest rate (0%) on a portion of my loans, and one of my dearest girlfriends put me in touch with her family in France so that I can have the beginning of a community in my new home.  This is just the beginning of the support I have received.  One of the alumni I interviewed with went out of his way to give me tips on finding a place to live, a woman I met five years ago and who used to live in Paris gave me a ton of advice via skype, close friends of mine in Europe have made sure that I know that I already have a home there, and other friends have made sure that I have a place to stay (for free!) when I no longer have an income in December.  I am incredibly grateful and touched, and this experience has taught me a really important lesson.  I learned that I am not alone and that there are truly amazing people in the world that will help me achieve my dreams.  The truth is that I am taking a risk so big that sometimes it feels like I am leaping without a safety net, that I can see myself crashing and loosing it all, and I find myself wondering what the hell I am doing.  But then I remember that I do have a safety net – one that exists in the support, encouragement and the courage that surround my dream  I know that it is all going to be okay, that it will even be better than okay.   So dream big.  You never know, those dreams might actually come true.

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