“Stepping out on Faith”
by Schannon Love

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not much of a risk taker. Honestly speaking, I think this has a lot to do with my fear of making the wrong decisions. I’m currently trying to de-condition my pessimistic ways of thinking, so that I may begin seeing the hypothetical glass as being half full, rather than half empty.

My father always says that the people who take risks are the ones with the best stories to tell, and when I think about it, he’s absolutely right. Success rarely falls into people’s laps; successful people have usually worked hard and have taken many risks to get to where they are.

Uncertainty and fear are usually a college student’s worst enemies because they hinder us from reaching our full potential. We’re imprisoned by the question, “What if I’m wrong?” This is our biggest mistake. Rather than dwelling on the possibilities of failure, we should concentrate on the benefits of success. Therefore, we should be asking, “What if I’m right?” If we don’t believe ourselves, neither will anyone else. So in order to achieve our vision, we must believe in them first.

Risks are full of lessons that impact our growth and development, as well as our perceptions. Analyzing reasons for wanting to do something should determine whether it’s worth the risk. If risks are motivated by a personable passion, then we must learn to step out on faith. When you feel something churning in your soul, and your heart and mind are in accord, faith allows you to believe in the intangible. If this feeling is present, it’s almost impossible to avoid taking the risk.

Accomplishments that stem from taking risks build our confidence and willingness to step out on faith. There’s nothing more rewarding than having our efforts result in achievement. Though all risks will not be rewarding, we should appreciate the experience and walk away with something positive.

When taking risks, always remember:

1. Analyze your reasons for wanting to take a risk. . . your purpose should not be self-centered, but reflective of all who will be affected.

2. Consider the best and worst case scenarios. . .and if the rewards outweigh the regrets, GO FOR IT!

3. Don’t allow your dreams to be swept away — You can’t let yourself or anyone else talk you out of your vision. The most influential people in life have been courageous risk takers.

4. If you decide to take a risk, focus on the positive. . .Believe it, and you will achievement it.

5. Be persistent and confident when taking a risk. . . Conduct formal or informal research using available resources, aggressively pursue what you believe in, and STEP OUT ON FAITH!

6. If you find that you’re running the wrong race, realize that God allows U-turns. . . Even if you’re not always right, you get a spiritual “A” for effort.

7. Understand that every path you choose involves a learning experience. . .Even mistakes will inevitably lead to valuable lessons in other aspects of your life.

8. TALK TO GOD. . .ask and you shall receive!

Above all, remember that in order to get the best fruit in life, you must be willing to go out on a limb; or you can just sit around and wait until they [fruit] fall off the tree (rotten and spoiled).

Schannon is a RealWorld University student intern and senior public relations major at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, Florida. She is a native of Detroit, Michigan.

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