Why do we work ourselves to death? Why do we always look for the next payday? Why do we seek and submit and apply and bend over backwards for a material moment that will pay that bill or buy those groceries or secure that extra day of gas?

You don’t?

…Me, neither.

Wistful melodramatics aside, I always like to read articles or anecdotes about people who begin an adventure with little money or no visible means to make a lucrative living. Despite the misfortune stacked against them, there are many who throw all of their caution into F5 winds and tear away to another locale with just a few dollars and no idea how they’ll be accepted by the foreign culture.  Nevertheless, they stay strong, plug on through, and proceed to live the most exciting/fulfilling/necessary moment of their lives.

My enjoyment at this may sound like sarcasm. I couldn’t be blunter when I say, it’s not.

There is a strong emotion behind those words, but it falls closer into the side of envy. Everyone, I believe, has that chance to just get up and go – escape, if you will – into a place that will leave them in the right direction.  Those that take these chances are nothing short of heroes in my eyes.  They have found true freedom and will always stand beyond conformity.  They trend where I fear to follow.

The lucky ducks.

I am a thorough advocate of such action, especially when I see friends who are mentally exhausted or worried about the potential progress they’ve made in their lives.

But then they turn to me and say, “What about you, Brandee? What about your risks? You complain about us, but what about you taking those extra steps to achieve some of your goals?”

And I say, “Gomenasai, nani?”

The Japanese gets them every time.

Every risk is the same. By that, I mean that a “risk,” by defintion, is a possibility that could go right or wrong. That uncertainty creates a little thrill inside of us, an adrenaline rush. What relaxes one of us could scare the plaque off of another.

My risks, for example, range:

  1. Exploring an abandoned warehouse, factory, library, etc.
  2. Wearing thigh-high socks with a miniskirt – in public.
  3. Singing again. With an audience.
  4. Running away for a weekend escape.
  5. Following through with my “special” 30-year-old birthday gift to myself.
  6. Posting this list online.

Of course, taking a risk and seeing it through, whether the final result is positive or negative, can be one of the most rewarding moments of your life.

One of the biggest risks I’ve taken so far? Moving to Atlanta with nothing more than what I could carry in my Grand Am. I wouldn’t trade these last four and a half years for anything.

What about you?  What’s a risk that you’d like to take?