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feeling fRISKY

Am I the only person that doesn’t understand why some people choose to live a life of fear? Few good things come without risk. I think the world would be a better place if everyone learned to step out of their comfort zone and take some risks every now and again.

Here are a few instances from my life, in which I took a risk, and reaped the benefits…


Did you know I graduated with a degree in Psychology, but a concentration in pre-medicine? That’s right. I wanted to be a doctor. Specifically, a psychiatrist. I did well in all the pre-med courses and, come graduation time, was prepared to take the MCAT. But then, a funny thing happened. I got an email from one of my Psychology professors about a job opening in San Diego for a Special Agent.

My professor thought that I would be a great candidate for the position and recommended I apply. So apply I did (not thinking I’d actually get the job). That summer I worked as a Psychiatric Technician, gaining relevant experience to what I thought would be a long and prosperous career in medicine.

Fast forward three months. It was the morning of my MCAT and I was playing “Damn It Feels Good To Be A Gangsta” (I played that song before every single final I took in high school and college…not even joking) to pump myself up for the big test. Suddenly my phone rings. I answer it, and low and behold I received a job offer for the Special Agent position I applied for.

I accepted the job offer that morning and said goodbye to medical school. I took a huge risk accepting a job I knew little about, but 5 years later I am confident I made the right decision (couldn’t imagine still only being a first year resident MD). Although it was a dream to be called Dr. Ninja, I think Special Agent Ninja has a pretty nice ring to it… don’t you?


Girl Ninja and I have the most unique/weird/frustrating/awkward/awesome love story ever. I’ll save the story for another time, but I can tell you this; Taking a leap of faith and giving my heart to Girl Ninja was the best decision I’ve ever made. There were a few occasions in which we almost didn’t make it, but through a lot of hard work, and a continually evolving love for one another, I can say with confidence; Every frustrating moment was worth it. Married the crap out of her two years ago and couldn’t be happier.


You had to know this one was coming right? What kind of PF blogger would I be if I didn’t tie in money somehow? By investing standards, I guess I am considered a risky investor. 100% of my retirement accounts sit in the stock market. And, as we all are aware, the market can be a nightmarish rollercoaster in which it seems the only direction is down. Although I hate seeing my account balances drop 50% in a relatively short time span, I am more than happy to weather the storm. I am confident the risks I take in the market will pay off ten fold come time to retire.

In fact, I would argue that I take on very little risk. The real risk takers are the people who put no money in to retirement out of fear… or just plain laziness. They squander their cash now, but will be in for a rude awakening when they go to retire and have little or no funds available to them.

Yes, life is about taking risks, but that doesn’t give you an excuse to go be a stupid-head. If you want to start a basket weaving business and leverage a $100,000 loan to start said business, you aren’t taking a risk… you’re just being dumb. Life is about taking a leap of faith, but only if you have done your research and are confident that leap is likely to have a positive outcome.

What areas in your life have you taken on some risk? Have you ever held back from “taking the leap” and now regret it? Would you consider yourself a ‘risky’ or ‘play-it-safe’ individual?

p.s. now that most of you know what we look like and know our real first names, I’ve included our AHmazing wedding video below. Ladies, bring out the tissues. Guys, you probably will think this is terribly boring 😉




  1. Nice video Brandon! I think the main risk I took was leaving bonny Scotland behind and moving down to London for a new job… I left my family, friends and everything I knew behind for this new career.. so far it’s been worth it!

  2. I took the plunge and married the crap out of the best woman in the world (love that phrase!) and this weekend we’re off to celebrate our 40th anniversary. So I think that worked out OK (although I think she took a bigger risk than I!)

    Like you, I’m all stock. It worked for me so far, but of course the past is never a predictor…

    What kind of special agent are you? Or would you have to kill me if you told me? 🙂

  3. That tanorexic pictures looks fake … that’s all I have to say about that.
    I was fearless most of my life until I survived civil war (I was raised outside of USA). After that everything changed. I’m not paralyzed by fear but it is there most of the time. I have taken risks – good and bad ones, but still I would not change a thing in my life. Ok maybe few 🙂

  4. I’m not a huge risk-taker. I did just leave my wonderful, steady job and moved to the city to be closer to my husband’s job. There’s still a big “safe” element with my husband working, but all I’ve been able to score so far is a part-time job and some side gigs. It feels pretty risky to me!

  5. I love that video and it’s been great getting to know you and GN better!

    I’m a calculated risk taker. I’m considering one now that could possibly cut my salary significantly (yesterday’s post was timely).

  6. Man, you’re right about risk and just taking them as they come. It’s crazy that you were going to go med but went in a completely different direction! Sometimes you just gotta take the opporutniites when they come and go with it! New things are always a little scary at first, but once you get going, you realize that it’s not as scary as you thought. And what’s cool is that most decisions we make can be undone or changed course. So few deicsions are permanent. So don’t be scared, dudes!

  7. That video was beautiful!!!!!! Thank you so much for sharing.

    Today is my tenth wedding anniversary and I’m kicking myself that I didn’t have a video professionally created after seeing that beautiful piece!!!
    The biggest risk that I took was moving to Detroit. I had a full scholarship opportunity for softball at a division one university and my parents didn’t think that I should go – but deep down I knew this was the path that I was destined to take. Not only was I a four-year started on the team, but I graduated Summa Cum Laude as well, and left with an honours degree after not paying one cent for my education (how’s that for a Ninja-kick to higher education)???!!!
    many years after graduating now, it’s one of the things in my life that I am most proud of, and I can’t believe I took that risk.

  8. You’re right on about the people not investing/saving for retirement being the ones taking the most risk. I think it just comes down to people not understanding investing and getting caught up in the short term hype the media makes of a huge drop on Wall Street. Looking back at the past 5 years, I can vividly remember news stories about huge market drops. I have yet to hear a story how the market has come all the way back from the lows.

    One of my big risks was taking a job at a very small business a few years ago. I saw the potential it had in growth and took the chance. I am seeing that growth now and am excited for the future.

    • I think the media thing is because run-ups happen slowly while drops happen fast. That, and the old media mantra: good news is no news. 🙂

  9. Brandon, thanks for sharing such a special moment of your life with us. You took a large leap of faith and I’m happy that it has worked out for you. I have only had one such moment in my life – moving across the country without a job. Luckily it worked out! I found work and made it through, now I couldn’t be happier that I made that decision at that time.

  10. Now does this mean you’ll share some of those amazing wedding photos without the black bar? 🙂

    Beautiful video, you are one lucky Ninja!!

  11. My risks were business risks! I bought income property when interest rates were not as low as they are now. I built a min real estate empire and cashed out after 13 years. I made enough to retire, instead I went back to work to add more to the nest egg. I went for passion instead of money and picked up a pension and lifetime medical. My future is even more assured than before. The risk was worth it.

  12. There is a huge aspect you are missing in this post. Luck. I have not been so lucky in my risky endeavors. Glad to hear things are so great for you, but there are so many who don’t have it so good…

  13. The most significant risk I took was buying my house last year. It was the best risk I’ve ever taken I think. I’m just shy of a month of my purchase date and about 4 months shy of living it it for a year. Best decision ever.

    Ps. The wedding video is awesome!

  14. Risks come in different sizes and shapes. My husband and I was a whirlwind romance. After being friends for more than 10 years, he suddenly proposed and for some reasons I cannot explain, I accepted it. Three months after, we were living together and still living together until now. It was a risk when I accepted his proposal and got into a relationship with him, but it was all worth it! I know I couldn’t be happier with any other man around. You have a really great wedding video!

  15. LOVE THE VIDEO!! Thanks for sharing; you guys are so well suited for each other!

    Biggest risk I’ve recently taken was in the selling of our condo and buying a townhouse in another town; my commute only jumped from 7 minute to about 30, the townhouse is twice as much in terms of purchase price and mortgage payments as our old place (though about 100K under the pre-approval from the bank), but you know what? We REALLY love our new home! A month after was moved in, I still walk around in awe that we live there!

  16. I have to admit I held back from taking a leap into investing outside of the 401k. Until I realized the risk was more in not investing outside of it!

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