5 Quotes on Risk That Will Have You Ready to Take Action

Nothing ventured, nothing gained -- right? Get ready to face some risk with these inspiring calls to action.

learn more about Adam Toren

By Adam Toren • Jul 7, 2015 Originally published May 5, 2014

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Entrepreneurship is an inherently risk-based profession. Every day you're risking your own future on the power of your personal work ethic, market conditions and other factors -- some within your control, many outside of it -- that you will succeed.

So when you're facing risk or feeling the apprehension of it on the horizon, here are five inspiring quotes about risk that will help you manage the ambiguity of an unknown future and forge ahead in confidence.

1. "Some men see things as they are and say, "Why?' I dream of things that never were, and say, "Why not?" -- George Bernard Shaw

For most entrepreneurs, the dream of your future lies in a present or past moment where you asked, "what if?" Great innovation comes from asking what could be. Don't be afraid to start questioning the status quo of all things and take a risk to see your dream into reality.

Related: Are You a Risk-Taker or Just Reckless?

2. "Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision." -- Peter Drucker

With great risk often comes great reward. There are failures, setbacks and even complete start-over's along the way, but if you don't risk something, you'll never gain anything. Take a chance and see what rewards might come out of that courageous decision.

3. "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy." -- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

No one is going to blame you for being scared when big risks come your way. You'll need to weigh them appropriately and come up with your own assessment about whether they're intelligent gambles. When you're staring calculated risk in the face it can still feel scary, but know that in times of fear and challenge you often learn and grow the most. Rise to meet the risk you're facing head-on and know that whatever the outcome, you'll be better off in some way for having taken the challenge.

Related: Richard Branson on Taking Risks

4. "Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it." -- attributed to Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

With the risk comes the magic that often arises from succeeding at big challenges. Somehow the greatest solutions, biggest innovations and best breakthroughs seem to always come personally and professionally when you risk the unknown and forge out, not forgetting your fear but embracing it and choosing to move forward in spite of it. There is most certainly a genius to being bold. Remember this great good that comes along with risk.

5. "Security is mostly superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing." -- Helen Keller

The very nature of life is uncertain. Watching any good wildlife documentary will help you realize this to be true. It can help take the sting out of risk to remember the natural order of life is risk and reward. Sometimes we fail, other times we succeed, but there is evolution in continuing to go forward. Don't settle for a false sense of security by shrinking from the right risks. Live bold and have a daring adventure every day.

Related: 5 Entrepreneurs Who Embrace, and Dominate, Risk

Adam Toren

Serial entrepreneur, mentor, advisor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com

Adam Toren is a serial entrepreneur, mentor, investor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com. He is co-author, with his brother Matthew, of Kidpreneurs and Small Business, BIG Vision: Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right (Wiley). He's based in Phoenix, Ariz.

Related Topics

Editor's Pick

This Co-Founder Was Kicked Out of Retailers for Pitching a 'Taboo' Beauty Product. Now, Her Multi-Million-Dollar Company Sells It for More Than $20 an Ounce.
Have You Ever Obsessed Over 'What If'? According to Scientists, You Don't Actually Know What Would Have Fixed Everything.
Most People Don't Know These 2 Things Are Resume Red Flags. A Career Expert Reveals How to Work Around Them.
Business News

Massive Fire At Top Egg Farm Leaves Estimated 100,000 Hens Dead. What Does This Mean For Egg Prices?

Hillandale Farms in Bozrah, Connecticut went up in flames on Saturday in an incident that is still under investigation.

Business Solutions

5 Procurement Trends To Keep on Your Radar for 2023

Procurement professionals must adapt to inflation and a shortage of skilled labor in the face of an economic recession. Investing in a workforce paired with retraining and development strategies will put your company on top amid economic uncertainty.

Business News

Out With the Kibble and In With the Steak. The World's Richest Dog Has a Net Worth of $400 Million – And a New Netflix Docuseries Too

'Gunther's Millions' is set to unpack the pooch's mysterious fortune and what those around him have done with his inheritance.

Business News

'This Just Can't Be for Real': Fyre Festival Fraudster Billy McFarland is Now Hiring For His New Tech Company -- And He's Already Selling Merch

McFarland was released from house arrest last September and is currently being ordered to pay $26 million in restitution to fraud victims.


Here's Why You Stop Expecting Support from Others and Become Your Own Cheerleader

Learning to be our own cheerleaders is good for our mental health. Here's why.