How to Risk Everything + Trust That It’ll Be Worth It : 33 micro-stories from YOU… And 1 from me.

I’m laying on my bed with a pencil and an old school composition notebook, jotting down titles of potential blog posts, when this title slips in: How to Risk Everything + Trust That It’ll Be Worth It.

Well, that’s impossible to actually write about, I think.

Usually, when I risk everything, I have no factual data to support that it’ll be “worth it”. That’s the nature of the risk. And yet, there’s something in me that whispers, go go go, do do do, leap leap leap. 

But just writing listen to the whispers and you’ll be okay… didn’t feel like a solid argument, to my still quite socialized anti-magic mind. (Even if that’s actually the most true thing I know in my body, in my bones).

My sense was that there was a lot more to the story, and in fact, what was needed were the actual stories. Stories of people who’ve taken brave risks, despite their fear, despite the stakes. Stories of things both working out, and not working out, and the sensation, the feeling, that’s on the other side of risking–no matter the tangible result.

So I took a proposition to Facebook.

“Like this status if you’re someone who would answer yes to the question: At some point in your life, have you ‘risked everything’?”

I got over 50 likes in a matter of hours. I sent those people this message:

hi dear, i’m doing a fun survey. if you want to play, here’s the deal:

i thought it’d be fun to ask 17 people to answer a 2-sentence prompt around risking everything, and turn it into a blog post.

the prompt goes like this…

my big risk was _____.
how to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? _____.

permission to be as honest as you’d like, and go in any direction that’s true. but just one sentence per question. try not to over-think it.

and then sign it with any name you’d like (real or fake, initials or full deal).

so much love!

One by one, the vulnerable magical truth spilled in. In people’s micro stories, there was a sense that they “couldn’t say no”, that they “had no choice but to risk it all,” that the the real risk was in what might happen if they didn’t risk it all. 

The people who risk it all, seem to have a connection to a mysterious or certain call, and it’s one that they simply cannot ignore.

Revel in the magic of these 33 micro-stories of risking it all, below:

  1. My big risk was to choose to say no more to the blame and shame I was asked to carry. I could not really trust that it was going to be worth it but I knew if I didn’t act I would be a desiccated carapace, and so I said no more. –JC
  2. My big risk was quitting my job and moving to Europe for 5 months while my (then) husband spent a semester of grad school there. How to trust it would be worth it? (Must admit I have safety nets I don’t always acknowledge.) There was something about the sense of adventure and dream-come-true opportunity I couldn’t say no to. –HL
  3. Breaking a contract with my mother to not speak my truth, to not be in reality in the moment this included walking away from this relationship and meeting the primal terror that comes when something you thought you needed to be safe and secure in your life is severed. I don’t think you risk everything with the reassurance that it will be worth it…that isn’t how it feels in your nervous system, body or emotions at the moment of choice to risk…in many ways the greatest risks in our lives won’t feel like choices…there are moments when it’s undeniable what is happening. Ultimately nothing true can be lost or damaged…our essential nature is intact whether things “work out” or are “worth it”…it always works out…just not from a place of fantasy or illusion. Betrayal of our own inner truth is the most damaging betrayal and loss we can experience. To align with what is true…to act on what is true…gives life regardless of the consequences. –AC
  4. My big risk was to fall in love with someone else and to give myself away, in totality. How to risk everything and trust that It’ll be worth it? Don’t even worry about trusting or distrusting because it was an adventure that took on a life of it’s own powered by my “self”, and that’s where the magic really was. — pH
  5. My big risk was moving to Nevada with what I could fit in my SUV. I had no idea it would be worth it, but my heart was free and my mind was open.. Enter my new husband! — NW
  6. My biggest risk was to tell a media company owner that I could be a newspaper publisher even though I only had a 9th-grade education and if he didn’t give me the job, I would quit right there and then. How to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? … Well, you have to be entirely comfortable with the fact that your next move could possibly be something that you swore you’d never do. –Margaret Porter
  7. My big risk was leaving my life for a new one – when no new one existed. Choose. Faith is a choice and I choose (sometimes between tight-chested breaths) to believe it will be okay. Sometimes I have to make this choice every five seconds. –AM
  8. my big risk was unceremoniously quitting my job to start my business in 2009. how to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? consider the absolute worst case scenarios in taking the leap vs. staying put, and follow your bliss. – evan
  9. My big risks always had to do with love. How to risk everything and trust it’ll be worth it? Because anything done in love will always turn out right, even if right isn’t what we planned. –JC
  10. my big risk was moving a thousand miles away from home for a boy. how to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? follow your heart and meet your mom’s advice half-way. DR.
  11. To leave my husband of 30 years & follow my hearts desire… Open to Spirit & trust that the adventure will bring your soul back to life, things always change anyway –JM
  12. Quitting my job and bringing health back to my heart & family. Play the game of life to win, for fun, for love, for people. –Jobe
  13. My big risk was leaving my job, husband, and house for the unknown. How to trust and know it will be worth it is that little voice deep inside that you can’t ignore and signs outside that point you in the right direction. Signed JLIS
  14. My big risk was walking away from money. Know that it’s much scarier to risk nothing. — SM
  15. My big risk was to become a life caretaker. As you care so shall you be cared for, so live in love with all life now and forever. — RJ
  16. I left my high-paying corporate accounting job, my home and my friends to live in rural Idaho and marry a man met online. To risk everything demands that you always and fully harmonize with your heart and trust the resonance – or the dissonance – and leap accordingly. –Nona Jordan
  17. My big risk was choosing to live when the Light of death showed me its magnificence. How to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? Choose, then stay with the choice long enough to find the rightness in the choice. –HH
  18. I feel that my life has been filled with one big risk after another, but the catalyst was leaving an unhealthy relationship, moving to a new city and enrolling myself in art school. After that, I actually met my soul mate when I wasn’t looking, continued on this creative journey, had two beautiful daughters and, even through the most difficult times, things get better and better…I’m living a life beyond my wildest dreams. – Veronica Funk
  19. Moving to virginia from California with my wife with everything that fit in a honda element. To let go of what it was you were risking in the first place so it becomes not a risk. -loren anderson
  20. my big risk was buying a one way ticket to thailand, with no plan and not enough money to return home. how to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? Stop worrying and trust your intuition, right now. –ED
  21. my big risk was ending a stable and certain career as an attorney – emptying 100% of our savings – all to start a risky tech company. how to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? I’d like to say that all the things I was scared of never came about, but they all came about; they just weren’t so scary when lived out. — KB
  22. my big risk was choosing to be a mother, carrying out an unexpected pregnancy when my life was a total mess. how to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? Life is not “safe”. There are no guarantees no matter which way you go; I’ve learned the real choice is to see everything as the path to awakening. –Molly
  23. My big risk happens over and over! I constantly risk giving up everything I build and end up with my car, a scribbled notebook and a plan. Each time I build more and more but I will scrap it in a moment if it is not my heart’s true desire! This is so scary, but I simply cannot exist any other way! There is not how to risk everything that will cause you to trust. You just TRUST! — RF
  24. My big risk was leaving the ‘ideal’ job and education with next to nothing and the chance of losing even more because of it… knowing that if I left, I’d never go back, and that I had no idea what I’d do or what I even enjoyed anymore. How to…? Be still and listen close to the quiet ache of your empty belly, until you can’t stay any longer in the safety of a warming lamp that doesn’t suit your soul – until your thirsty, wild muse whispers, “move. now. jump,” into the dark… then make it swift without a second thought, as gentle as possible, and while your eyes adjust – just keep walking, following the scent that makes you feel Alive again. ~ Hali
  25. To leave my husband of 30 years & follow my hearts desire… Open to Spirit & trust that the adventure will bring your soul back to life, things always change anyway. –jm
  26. my big risk was leaving everything i knew by way of job, friends, city, etc. to go live in a snakeshack in the middle of the carolina mountains with a wizard.. trusting that it will be worth it because there was no other choice i could make! i was in love with the possibility and knew i couldn’t go on stifling what i truuly wanted – now everyday feels more like a celebration than anything – even with all the navigating of the unknown, etc! cracked open and ready!! –AS
  27. My big risk was leaving my life/friends/kids in California and moving to a new state with a man a meet online and only knew for 9 months. You gotta just trust your heart… The only real risk is not listening and risking the magic of life. –Julianne
  28. SO, my big risk was: throwing caution to the wind, following the uncontainable joy in my heart, and getting married when I was 21. How to do this and trust that it’ll be worth it?: I don’t think I could’ve done anything else. Things have changed over the years, of course, and we’ve had many challenges in our relationship. But that joy was leading me, and I was only 21 so I REALLY didn’t over-think! HA!! I’m now in the process of trying to continue to follow that joyous heart, and it’s way more complicated now. But I trust in the basic goodness of life, and the goodness of my self & my desires. I don’t regret anything so far. All the mistakes and the hard times have been lessons that I couldn’t have learned otherwise. It has all been worth it. With love, Krista
  29. I don’t have one biggest risk. My current biggest risk is starting my own business. The way to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it is to trust yourself. To me this means to trust that you know what is best for you and even if it doesn’t turn out how you would have hoped to trust that it’s still leading you towards your highest good. –YM
  30. My big risk was: stand up for myself. How to do this? Trust and love, saying goodbye and doing the first step. Easier to write in two sentences than to actually do! — VA
  31. Moving to virginia from California with my wife with everything that fit in a honda element. To let go of what it was you were risking in the first place so it becomes not a risk. -loren anderson
  32. My big risk was leaving a certain career and relationship to pursue an uncertain education in a dying field. Stagnation can feel like suffocation, and the only way to breathe again is to move. — GB
  33. My big risk was to leave a comfortable job and bike across country with someone I love without much certainty on the future. How to risk everything and trust that it’ll be worth it? Letting go of your fears and opening up your heart and mind will allow you to gain trust of the unknown, and whatever that experience is, will be worth it in the long run. With love, Brian
And me? My big risk?

My big risk was/is/continues to forever be… following the magic of true love and the love of truth–letting love and truth grow me bigger and braver, despite the fear that brings up in myself and others. How to risk it all and know that it’ll be worth it? Living small, living compressed, living a lie–it’s actually dangerous to my health, well-being, and pure joy, and I’m simply not willing to put myself in that kind of danger, any longer.

How about you? Feel free to add to the tapestry of magic in the comments below.

All love,

PS–Enormous gratitude to the magical story-sharers. If I somehow missed your story in the slew of Facebook messages, please forgive me! xoxo

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *