Most of what a value most in my life would not have happened without taking a risk – getting married, having a child, going to law school, leaving law for teaching. In French they say, Qui ne risque rien n’a rien (key nuh reesk ree-n nah ree-n). It literally means “Who risks nothing has nothing,” but we’d say “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.”
It’s amazing to me how many of my students are totally risk averse. Most of them will choose an easier course to guarantee a good grade. While I don’t think anyone should take crazy risks, some degree of reasonable stretch brings a life that is richer and more rewarding. Carpe diem! Seize the day!