The simple act of ‘taking a chance’ can allow a person to have some of the most important experiences of their lifetime.

While there is no consensus on what exactly you should take a chance on, each person knows in their heart what some of their greatest ambitions are and what some of their deepest regrets may be. Taking a chance is all about living those ambitions to the fullest while minimizing the likelihood of forming regret. 

For many people, taking a shot at love can be one of the most significant opportunities in life. Yet, love doesn’t begin at the wedding or during the honeymoon. That blissful state cannot be reached without taking that first step of asking someone out on a date. 

Asking a person out can be a nerve-rattling experience for all too many of us. This moment can present feelings of uncertainty, of excitement, and even embarrassment. At least once, we’ve all seen a person who catches our attention — we wonder how to start that first conversation with them. In many scenarios that conversation is never started, and the possibility of forming a future relationship does not occur. 

This lack of initiation can lead to feelings of regret, which is a sensation that we all wish to avoid. But what if you took that first step and started that conversation — where would the road have led you?

Taking a chance at love

Sayd Hussain, a 23-year-old who met his fiancé Leanet during college, wrestled with feelings of uncertainty in the weeks before he asked her to go out on their first date. “I shared a class with her, so we had gotten to know each other a little. Although, I always felt that she was the nicest girl in the entire class even though we rarely spoke.” 

After several weeks of class had passed, Sayd built up the courage to speak to Leanet after class. “I realized that I didn’t have anything to lose and all to gain,” he said. “Our pre-dating relationship was arguably one of the easiest, smoothest parts of my life. Everything seemed to flow and connect easily. There was no need to require courage, or complex love games. It was as if it was meant to be.”

While it must be stated that not every conversation with the attractive other will lead to a lifetime of love and happiness, it will certainly lead to a life lived without regret. And it is important for all of us to recognize that the worst-case scenario when asking someone out on a date is that they say no — life will go on — and experience will be gained for the next time. 

Taking a chance at obtaining an education or a new career

Taking a chance does not always have to be about finding love. 

One of the biggest chances that a person takes could be in their pursuit of education or a career. On March 26th of this year, I received an acceptance to attend medical school. Taking a chance was a required part of every step of the journey as I worked towards achieving my goal of becoming a physician. 

I took the admissions test for medical school not once, not twice, but three times before I earned a score that was competitive for my application. Prior to taking that third exam, my first attempt at applying to medical school ended in failure as I did not receive an acceptance to attend any university.

Yet I didn’t back down, I strengthened my application, and I applied again — ultimately achieving my goal. Success! Each attempt at the admissions test and each year of applying to medical school was a gamble. This commitment took time, effort, and money that could have been focused elsewhere. But I sought this challenge through to the end because it was more important to try to succeed rather than to move on and live in regret. 

I took these chances, and I saw them pay off with my own eyes. You can take this chance too — whether it be a chance at finding love, a new career, or in any facet of life — regardless of how old or young you may be. 

Yet, the means by which individuals take chances has changed in the pandemic-ridden world that we find ourselves in. 

Taking a chance in our new, socially distanced society

The Coronavirus pandemic has altered the way that we interact with each other, and it has changed the means by which we obtain new experiences.

Stephan Schneider, a 28-year-old from South Florida, pondered the ways in which he could step outside of his comfort zone during the lockdown in the early months of the pandemic. In a world with closed businesses and shuttered schools, Stephan had to create a new experience for himself all while remaining in the confines of his own home. After completing research online, Stephan came across a free online course taught by a Harvard professor on edX regarding political philosophy. 

“I recognized that this was a time to gain knowledge for the sake of learning and self-improvement,” Stephan stated. “Life works in mysterious ways. An uncomfortable situation may actually result in a better overall position for you to succeed in life. The trick is to recognize the opportunity and walk through the door when it unlocks.”

Taking a chance at obtaining a new experience may sometimes be scary, and it may make you feel uncomfortable, but the opportunities for growth are limitless.

Why not let National Take a Chance Day be the date that you embark upon your greatest journey in life?

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines! Sail away from the safe harbor: Catch the trade winds in your sails.  Explore. Dream. Discover! ~ Author unknown

The Future of Connection for Women

Ross Mellman

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