21 Experts Reveal Their Biggest Risk That Paid Off


“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” – Anais Nin  

I asked 21 top bloggers this question: “What's the biggest risk you've taken that you feel has paid off?”

Jon Morrow of Boost Blog Traffic

riskMoving to Mexico in the middle of a drug war with no friends, no money, and no way to leave if things got bad. My entire family thought I was insane. My poor 80-year-old grandmother even drove across the state to come tell me goodbye, like I was going to die.

And I could have. I really could have.

Instead though, I built a multimillion dollar business and came back to the United States, one of the only severely disabled people in history to become entirely self-sufficient. It was a huge gamble, yes, but the payoff was enormous. 

Ramsay Taplin of Blog Tyrant 

riskWhen I first started blogging I worked as a cleaner from 6 am to 10 am every morning. This allowed me to make enough money to pay the bills, and then gave me enough time to come home and work on building up my web assets. Letting go of that job, however much I hated it, was a huge risk for me at the time. It was a safety net I really thought I needed. 
It was around that time that I also dropped out of college (with one semester to go…) in order to capitalize on my blogging opportunities. It was scary and everyone thought it was a bad idea, but I'm now running my own business and earning probably more than I ever could with my degree.

Donna Moritz of Socially Sorted

riskDon't be afraid to Pivot Your Blog when the Time is Right 
The biggest risk I made was in pivoting my blog. It's funny, because now I see the results, I can say that it probably wasn't a “risk” but a natural decision that was necessary. Pivoting your blog can be a BIG decision when you are finding your feet with blog direction. 
I realized in the first year that the posts I was writing about that were resonating the most with readers were the posts about visual content, so I switched to writing more about these. I also enjoyed writing about these posts so it was an easy decision. Watch for spikes in shares and comments on your own blog – what lights up your readers that matches up with what you enjoy writing about?  Try doing more of that.   For me the risk was worth it – after I pivoted my blog I quickly increased readers, subscribers, and won major blogging awards like Best Business Blog in Australia in 2014 and Top 10 Social Media Blog for Social Media Examiner in 2015.  I wasn't blogging any more frequently, but I was blogging about a topic that resonated – with me and with readers. 
I would also add that pivoting does not need to happen quickly and you don't need to “niche” your blog straight away. Sure, if you have a topic or focus that just seem right, start out that way, but there is no shame in pivoting to be more general (if your niche is not as interesting to readers as you thought it would be) or pivoting to niche (if you find that you are getting great results about a particular subject like I was). Give yourself time to watch and test – sometimes it takes a while to find your blog voice and to find your “tribe” of people, your ideal audience that love to read what you love to write about.  
For more advice on how to ‘find the sparks' that will help you pivot your content, I highly recommend you read this post and watch this video. Darren Rowse was the man who made me realize that those sparks were worth pursuing, after I saw him give a similar presentation at Problogger Event in Australia, 2012.  This is a must-watch video for all bloggers. 

Pauline Cabrera of TwelveSkip

riskBiggest risk? Hmmm, that would be investing time on something without knowing whether it will work out or not.

For example, in the first year of my blogging, I invested so much time in Twelveskip without getting that much in return. It's like I was working full-time for free. I kept telling myself to have fun and be passionate because I believed one day all these would pay off. I spent most of my time learning, experimenting, networking and creating content. I was inspired by those people who started from nothing (like Michelle Phan) and became really successful because they are passionate about what they do. If they can do it, why can't I, right?

Now I've been happy with the level of engagement I've got. I love how I actually make a living from blogging. It took me a year and a half to figure all out but I never felt like it's work. I've loved every bit of it.

 Jenna Dalton of JennaDalton.com

riskOne of the biggest risks I've taken so far in my business is when I volunteered to be in front of 30,000+ people and have my business dissected. I applied to be part of the audience for the CreativeLive taping of Michael Port's Book Yourself Solid 3-day workshop and I got accepted. Being an introvert, it was a terrifying thought to be in front of thousands of people and have someone tell me what I was doing wrong. It was even more terrifying because I was at a crossroads – I had decided I didn't want to focus on personal training and nutrition coaching anymore, but I was still figuring out the exact direction I wanted to move my business in.
The morning of the first day of filming I felt like I was going to throw up. I almost chickened out. I wanted to fake being sick and just stay in my hotel room. But I went. And during those 3 days Michael became a powerful mentor for me. He still is. I'm so glad I got over myself and just went for it because I can say with absolute confidence that my business is where it is today because I said yes to that experience (even though it scared the pants off me).

Dennis Seymour of LeapFroggr 

riskIn this early stage of my blogging journey on LeapFroggr.com, I think the biggest thing so far was that I decided to publish once a month, instead of once a week, because of my crazy schedule. I would often miss my deadlines and it would just lead to more depressing thoughts and as you know, that hurts a blogger’s productivity very much.
This way, I can maintain the quality of the posts, promote each one for a longer period, have time to create unique content for my email subscribers that builds up to the next post and it gives me enough time to create guest posts on other sites. Has it paid off? So far, it has given me time to talk to my email list, build new connections and make friends like you, Sue.
If this keeps up, I’ll be able to have some extra time to actually do something with my personal blog by the 2nd half of the year and probably venture into podcasting a little later after that. 

 Adam Connell of Blogging Wizard

riskThe biggest risk I've taken was when I left my job to focus on blogging full-time.

This was a serious financial risk. As with most forms of online income – there are no guarantees. But, I felt the risk was worth taking in order to scale my blog.

6-7 months later and I've grown my income by 500% which is beyond all my expectations. There were a few moments where I had serious doubts but I've always believed that anything can be achieved if we put our minds to it. 

Tor Refsland of Time Management Chef

riskIn the past I was running a few businesses, while having a full-time corporate job. That wouldn't have been possible, if I hadn't cracked the code on time management, which helped me increase my productivity by 200%. Even though I was doing quite well in terms of income, I knew that my energy and time was spread out on too many projects. Success is all about goal setting, time management, productivity and focus.

My biggest risk was when I decided to leave my six-figure corporate job and pull the plug on all my other businesses, in order to follow my true passion – to found Time Management Chef, where I help online entrepreneurs free up more time, so they can focus on what they really love.

Yaro Starak of Entrepreneurs-Journey

riskThe biggest risk I have ever taken was the decision to pursue entrepreneurship in the first place and avoid any kind of full-time job. That meant I had to be responsible for my income directly and not rely on someone else to pay me a salary. 
If things didn't work out I could still be living with my parents now, which would not be so great at 35 years old!
I feel it definitely paid off of course, given the kind of lifestyle I've been able to live for the past 15 years. I've been able to travel the world, construct my days how I want to, and earn much more money than most people ever make working a job.

Andrea “Dre” Beltrami of The Branded Solopreneur

riskNo question, the biggest risk I've taken is rebranding my business from scratch. In fact, it was a HUGE gamble and down right terrifying, but I knew it was the right choice for me. The unfortunate truth is, I spent almost 2 years building a brand around a niche I had very little interest in and a persona I manufactured in an effort to ‘be professional'. Ultimately, I decided I had to ditch it all and start fresh. Something others told me I was a fool for doing.  

After 3 months of soul-searching and rebranding I proudly launched The Branded Solopreneur. This new and improved brand is 110% unapologetically true to my style, personality, talents and passions. It's this seamless personal alignment with my business that I credit with allowing me to surpass the success that took 2 years in my last brand in just a couple of months after launching my new brand. Taking a chance on myself and following my intuition has been the most rewarding risk I've ever taken, which makes reaching each need level of success I attain that much sweeter. 

John Meese of JohnMeese.me

riskThe biggest risk I've taken that has paid off?

I walked away from a job without another job waiting. I wasn't comfortable with some financial practices in the non-profit I worked for, so I resigned without a clue where I'd be going next—within weeks, I had four job offers to choose from, all better. That was a lesson in trust falls, for sure!

Stuart Walker of Niche Hacks

riskI used to make a full-time living from low risk online casino bonuses and sports betting. That was great for a few years then started to get more difficult so the money was drying up. I took what was left of my cash and went and traveled around South America for 6 months. Came back broke and had to get a mind numbing office job.

After a few months I'd saved some cash up and decided to quit and go travel in South East Asia for 6 months. I decided that whilst out there I'd figure out some sort of way to make money online but I had no real idea how I was going to do it as “internet marketing” didn't mean a thing to me then. 
Suffice to say because I had no plan or idea what I was going to do I never got round to doing anything and was resigned to the fact I'd be going home broke and have to find a job. Near the end of the trip I met a guy who was doing SEO and affiliate marketing and he inspired me to give internet marketing a try. I went back home, broke again, but determined to make it work.
Instead of looking for a job I decided to dedicate myself to online marketing determined I would make it work, so I started using my overdrafts and credit cards to fund it. It took a while (well over a year to even begin to see any consistent income) and there were lots of points where I thought maybe online marketing wasn't for me and I would have to get a job but I was persistent and eventually it worked.
It was pretty risky because if it didn't work I'd spent a year + the 6 months before when I was traveling out of a job and would probably struggle to explain to potential employers what I'd been doing that time (I can't imagine them being impressed by me messing around on the internet), I'd be broke and in debt, and in a worse situation than before.
Everyone I knew during that time discouraged me and told me I had to get a job, it wasn't possible to make cash online and so on, but I knew it was possible and just didn't want to give up on that dream.
Paid of now. Have a generous income the internet, an online business, can travel as I please, am location independent and live abroad. 
Glad I took the risk.

Brian Lee of Genius Types

riskThe risk I took was foregoing the security of a great career path, the foundation of which I had built over three years working there. At the trajectory I was on when I left, I most likely would have been in an executive position today.
Instead, I chose to travel the world, work in the film industry, start a blog, and eventually use my unique set of skills in my own business as a content marketer for myself and clients.
The path wasn't easy, and there were times where I felt I’d made the wrong decision. 
Despite the struggle, I wouldn't trade it for the world.  Today, I enjoy a level of freedom and control over my life that I would not have been able to achieve on the other path.
As an unexpected bonus, my set of skills is very hard to replicate.  Therefore, my earning potential is virtually unlimited.
If someone were to ask me if I recommend this path to others, I would say that it’s not for everyone.  The sacrifices were great.  If I had other people relying on my income when I left the security of my job, it would have been the wrong decision.
But, If you have carefully weighed the risks, are willing to pay the price, have the talent, and get a little lucky along the way, the reward can be worth the risk.

Jerry Lowe of Web Hosting Secrets Revealed

risk14 months after WebHostingSecretRevealed.com got slapped by Google Penguin, I decided to shift everything to a new domain for better prospects. The .com site was one of Majestic Million (it's still ranking 130,755 today) and my main income source back then. Leaving the site behind meant I had to rebuild everything from scratch with zero traffic and income. I was literally losing thousands of dollar per month in content and our new tool (WHSR Uptime Monitor).

 Luckily, it turns out to be a right call.

Today, the new site WebHostingSecretRevealed.net is better than the old ones in many ways. We are now less dependent on Google Search traffic; the site has a better brand recognition, get shared 100x more often on social media, and personally I have much better sleep at night not worrying of another Google penalty.

Sylviane Nuccio of SylvianeNuccio.com

riskThe biggest blogging/business risk that I’ve taken, could easily be the one I took four months ago, when I decided to merge my 3 blogs/niches together under the same roof.

Why was it a risk?

Because most of the bloggers I know were advising me not to do this, giving me all the reasons why it would be a huge mistake.  After all, it’s hard to put 3 niches under one domain name.  Isn't it?

But all I needed to hear is that while difficult, it was POSSIBLE.

Four months later, looking back at my blog, everything is on the rise.

  • More traffic – That traffic curve keeps going up steadily every month since December.
  • More interactions on each post – 50+ comments on a bad week to 100+ on a good one.
  • More motivation to write great content – Having only one blog to manage is more motivating for content quality.
  • More motivation to create original and costumed images for each post – This helps me developing my brand through images at a whole new level.
  • More motivation to promote my posts – Feeling good about my blog gives me more energy to promote it.

My blog and I are getting noticed. I can see that by the increase in guest post requests, post contributions and other interviews that I am getting these days.

The merging of my 3 blogs under one roof was a success. The risk paid off.

Dev Sharma of WPKube

riskI think the biggest risk I've taken is selling my business blog to focus on a niche topic. Four years ago, I sold my main business blog to focus on WordPress niche. It was my main income source at that time and selling the site meant, I
would have to start from scratch.

Now that I look back, it looks like shifting my focus to WordPress niche (with WPKube) was a right call.

Today, I have a good presence in the WordPress community, featured on many authority sites, an amazing team of writers and bloggers, and above all, have been able to help a lot of beginner WordPress users.

Neil of Blogician

riskBiggest risk? Got to be trying my hand at grey/blackhat SEO. I have a relatively new blog in the relationship niche. Great content, well optimized – but still crappy unrelated sites were outranking me for the main keywords. A quick backlink check showed huge number of blackhat backlinks. Frankly speaking, Google's algorithm was not doing a good job. So, I decided to give it a helping hand (not mentioning the blog for obvious reasons).

I ordered 60 do-follow comments on pages having valid PR. Received -20 penalty! Ouch! Should have gone slower. Next up: Guest post on PR5 blog (basically it's for selling guest posts only). I wrote a 1200 word article and used a contextual link (in first paragraph). I also used an image backlink with keyword in the alt tag. Then I ordered 300 Plus ones for my homepage, drip fed over a week. Voila! My blog jumped to #2 from #10 for Keyword 1. For another high competition keyword, my blog reached #16 from #130.

The results were completely unexpected.  I was just doing this as an experiment. I was just hoping to avoid a penalty. But it turned out to be a nice experience for me. My risk paid off. It has been months now and I am making a few bucks from it.

I am not encouraging you to try this for your main blog; I never try these things on Blogician. But for niche blogs, you can give it a go. After all, if your blog is being outranked by crappy sites, why would it be wrong to fix it? You are just showing Googlebot the right direction! What do you think?

Donna Merrill of Donna Merrill Tribe

riskI think the biggest risk I took was when I spent a substantial amount of money to get one-on-one coaching for product creation and marketing. 

At the time, I thought that maybe I was spending too much money just for “some advice.” 

But it changed my whole perspective and my business has soared since.  It was a big financial risk at the time, but in retrospect, I'm sure glad I did it. 

Of course, I had to take action on what they taught me, but without their direction I would have taken action on things that got me nowhere.

Now, I use coaching each step of the way, because I'm convinced it's really the only way to move your business forward.

Instead of thinking of it as a risk, I now consider coaching to be an essential part of my business budget.

Lorraine Reguly of Wording Well

riskLiving life to the fullest often involves taking risks, and being a blogger is no exception. 

The funny thing about blogging and being a blogger who takes risks is that the outcomes can be difficult to predict and are frequently not what we expect.
Sometimes success can occur accidentally, too, putting your name on the map when you least expect it.
Take the fourth blog post I ever wrote, for example, about my experience with downloading malware and the measures I took to rid my brand-new laptop computer of it. It hit the first page of Google Search, making my blog “discoverable” by those who were in need of the solution I found.
Finding the solution, however, required me to take a huge risk: to put my faith and trust in a total stranger, and believe that he knew what he was talking about. I mean, I had *just* trusted a reputable site with a PageRank of 8, and all I got was a piece of free software that ended up being malware. 
My entire belief system had been shattered, so it was difficult to trust anyone or anything. However, I knew I had to act, and I had to act fast. I had no choice; I had to remove the crap that was put on my computer. This involved downloading a special program to remove the culprit.
Fortunately, it worked. I successfully ran the program and rid my laptop of it's “infection.”
Then I immediately wrote about my experience. I wanted the world to know that the VisualBee Toolbar is malware. I didn't want others to go through the agony I endured. Because I'm a teacher, it's my nature to be helpful.
Writing honestly about each step I took caused Google to notice my free little blog. 
It also helped my credibility as a new blogger. It fueled Google to pay attention to my future posts, too. In under a year, I had achieved a PageRank of 2. Not too bad for free blog on WordPress.com! 😉
Because many more of my posts ended up ranking on the first page of Google Search (plus a few other reasons), I decided to get my own, hosted site. After doing extensive research on hosts, domain names, niches, etc., Wording Well was born.
During my first year of blogging, I began working as a freelance writer and editor, but after becoming a seasoned blogger and then published author, I added other various web-related and publishing services to my list. 
Now Wording Well is a certified, registered business, and I'm living life to the fullest — because I took risks (and still take them), and because they have paid off. 

Matt Banner of On Blast Blog

The biggest risk I've taken that has paid off is deciding to get started with my online business. Putting that first pen to paper or that first finger to your keyboard is probably one of the most difficult things to accomplish. No, the biggest risk is not about developing a unique link building strategy or adding elements within your content to increase engagement.

The decisions to reshape your life and harness your passion towards starting a blog is the highest hurdle you'll face. Starting a blog is sort of like jumping out of a plane. As you approach the open door at 18,000ft in the air, you're incredibly apprehensive about doing this and you're certainly rethinking everything. However, you know that you're with a trained professional and if you follow the best practices and guidelines set out for you, you know you'll make it to the ground safely. 

In blogging, most people are too afraid to take that first step. Making that decision to take a risk and start that blog you've meant to get up for years now is half the battle.

Kevin Duncan of Be A Better Blogger

riskThe January during my senior year of college, I signed a contract to begin work as a high school teacher immediately after graduating in August. The only problem was I wasn't due to graduate in August. I had four semesters worth of credits to complete, and only two semesters to complete them.
Crazy? Yes. A huge risk? Absolutely. So why did I do it? Because I'm not afraid to bet on me. The most successful bloggers — nay, the most successful individuals — aren't afraid to bet on themselves.
Want to succeed? Start betting on yourself. 

Amy Lynn Andrews of AmyLynnAndrews.com

riskThe biggest risk I've taken that has paid off is moving most of my content sharing from my blog to a weekly newsletter called The Useletter®
A “traditional” blog format in my niche (social media, blogging, making money online, etc.) is not ideal because information in this space changes so quickly. What I post today often becomes irrelevant later. I don't like the idea of readers visiting my site and finding old posts with tips that worked a few months or years ago. And for me, keeping hundreds of posts updated and accurate became completely overwhelming.
Touching base with subscribers via email each week allows me to share useful and current information in an easy-to-digest format.
What's the biggest business risk you have taken? Share it with us in the comments. 
21 Blogging experts reveal the biggest risk they have ever taken in business


  1. says

    Thank you so much for inviting me to be a part of this, Sue.

    I loved reading about other people’s experiences. I definitely sense a theme – leaving something behind that wasn’t working to take a chance on something that feels exciting and terrifying all at the same time (and having it pay off big time!)
    Jenna Dalton recently posted…14 Warning Signs You’re Confusing (Not Captivating) Your AudienceMy Profile

    • says

      Hi, Jenna,

      Thanks again for participating! I saw that theme also – excitement and terror and a pay off.

      I appreciate the comment.

    • says

      Hi, Kevin,

      You stand out in a good way among your colleagues, Kevin! I so appreciate you participating in this post.

      Thanks for the comment.

    • says

      Hey Kevin,

      I love the message behind your risk-taking adventure – assume that you’re awesome and you can totally do it. When you really want to accomplish something – like having a successful blog – you just do what it takes to make it happen. Just like you did what it took to graduate and make that goal happen.

  2. says

    Sue Ann, thanks for including me in this round-up. I see I’m amongst a lot of awesome people! 🙂

    I forgot to mention, too, that putting yourself out there on the internet is another huge risk that I’ve taken, all in my efforts to help others.

    Revealing personal things — like being involved in drugs and prostitution (as an indirect result of being raped) — is hard for many people, but I’ve done it, all in an effort to help others overcome their struggles.

    In fact, today I was a guest on Sylviane Nuccio’s blog, too, in a post titled “Rape, Drugs, and Prostitution – One Blogger’s Journey to Success,” AND I just found out that my local library wants to not only stock my book of short stories, Risky Issues, but also an anthology to which I contributed a story about how I nearly died!

    This all proves that good things can happen when you take risks!

    If I didn’t believe this, I never would have revealed that I once smoked crack, sold my body for money, or became a single mom… all because a friend had an abortion and ended up not being able to have kids.

    Becoming an author, a blogger, and a freelancer has definitely changed my life for the better!

    I’m sure glad I took these other risks… even if it might mean that I’ll be judged.

    Sometimes you just have to ignore your fears… and the haters and the judgers… in your efforts to help others.

    • says

      Hi, Lorraine,

      You’ve had an incredible life story and have come out on top! Risks and fears can rule our lives if we let them. I’m so glad you didn’t.

      Thanks for sharing and commenting.

  3. says

    Wow, what an inspiring read, Sue! I 2nd what Jenna said – it’s amazing to see the commonality of following what WE believed was right for US paying off.

    There’s something unbelievably freeing about following that little voice inside. If you can filter out the fear and commit to making the necessary sacrifices that little voice is usually right on the money.

    Thanks so much for letting me contribute to this post. It really is an inspiring piece that every blogger needs to read. Here’s to spreading the ‘believing in yourself’ message to those that need it!

    • says

      Hi, Dre,

      I really enjoyed coming up with this particular question, with the help of Jon Morrow. He had me really think about a question that top bloggers probably haven’t answered before and would be interested in answering. That everyone came up with such great answers was just wonderful.

      Thanks for your thoughtful comment and for participating in this post!

  4. says

    Great round up Sue Anne! It’s nice to see the risks that others have taken, and to see that they were all worth it.

    I think for me, the biggest risk was the whole working from home thing. I quit my full-time job in banking when my son was born, with just a bare minimum grasp of how freelance writing worked. I think I had maybe one steady client. The first year was rough (especially with a newborn!) and it time and research to find my groove but I’ve settled in a place where I’m happy. I like writing my blog, but I really love writing for others and working on their content.
    Corinne Kerston recently posted…A Business Lesson From My 4-Year-Old – And Why You Shouldn’t Go Head-First Down a SlideMy Profile

    • says

      Hi, Corinne,

      When us Moms take a risk to spend more time with our kids, it is scary but so worth it! I know your kids will appreciate it, even if they don’t realize the sacrifice till they are 21 🙂

      Thanks so much for sharing your story with us.

  5. says

    Hi Sue,

    Thank you for the opportunity and it’s great to be in such good company with successful bloggers and entrepreneurs.

    I guess I had remember the date wrong, I thought your post was coming out tomorrow, but I’m glad I caught it.

    Great job gathering all this superb information.

    • says

      Hi, Sylvaine,

      Thanks for participating! I think I did send out the incorrect date to you. I’m glad you discovered the post was live.

      I appreciate your comment.

  6. says

    Wow great roundup of people. Funny how some of the biggest risks can turn into the biggest successes in our lives. Also, it’s important to note that a lot of these weren’t really gambling as they were calculated risks that had a real chance of working out.

    • says

      Thanks for your comment, Ben. It is a funny thing – we don’t remember, sometimes, that calculated risks can work out.


    • says

      Ben – spot on observation.

      Sue – thanks again for having me in this roundup post. I read this from start to end and enjoyed everyone’s story.

  7. says

    AHHH, thank you so much for doing this Sue. I love reading my fellow bloggers’ stories. Very inspiring and motivating. It’s true when they say “No Risk, No Reward.”

    Thank you for including me as well.

    Off to sharing this now. Stay awesome! 🙂

    • says

      Thanks so much, Pauline. It’s hard to take risks sometimes but, you are right, no reward without the risk.

      I appreciate you commenting and sharing!

  8. says

    Hi Sue,

    The beautiful thing about Jon is that he gave himself no room to retreat. He had to succeed, or else. That’s how you cut the strings, that’s how you detach from outcomes and that’s how you can become really, really good in any venture. Jon gave himself an opportunity. In truth, I attribute my success and my freedom to doing stuff like JM. Kelli and I got through some whacky times early on in our world travels – and even before then – to live this dream life. All folks who are doing something epic, or pretty damn neat, had to take the leap of faith that others are too scared to take. We were scared too. Terrified. BUT we jumped 😉 Awesome post Sue!
    Ryan Biddulph recently posted…10 Tips to Be an All Over The Place BloggerMy Profile

    • says

      I loved getting these stories back from each person, Ryan. I felt like I had a peek into their lives.

      Thanks for your comment!

    • says

      Hi, Dennis,

      It was an open-ended question and your story was one that I resonated with. Everyone reading will get something out of each risky situation and, talking about the risk in blogging is just what some will need to hear.

      Thanks again for participating!

      • says

        That’s comforting to hear! 🙂

        It’s a pleasure and would be honoured to be back again.

        Enjoy the weekend Sue!

  9. says

    Sue, this is amaizing post where you share stories of success! Its a truly great reminder for us all to continue pursue our dreams and never stop “Dreaming HUGE”!

    Thanks for creating this!

    • says

      Hi, Anna,

      I love that – “Dreaming huge”. It’s a great mantra to have as an entrepreneur.

      You are so welcome and thanks for commenting.

  10. says

    Very interesting read, Sue. I am familiar with most of the wonderful bloggers who’ve shared their
    moment of risk – I subscribe to quite a few.

    No pain, no gain is something I’ve learned throughout my life. Reminds me of the beautiful Anais Nin quote “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

    Imagine the world without these risk takers! They are all doing such fabulous work!
    Vidya Sury recently posted…Did I Smile Today?My Profile

    • says

      Hi, Vidya,

      I love that quote! I’m going to put it at the beginning of the post. It summarizes beautifully what everyone went through.

      Thanks for your comment and the quote.

  11. says

    Great post, Sue.

    Thanks for including me with all these great experts. It`s a big honor 🙂

    The key is to go outside your comfort zone. That is the only way to grow your personal life and business.

    The higher the risk, the higher is the reward.

    However, it`s not for everyone. You have to be a little bit crazy in order to do big changes in your life.


    • says

      Hi, Tor,

      It was a pleasure to have your story be part of this post! I talked to 2 clients this week just about that point – going outside your comfort zone. It leads to growth (even if it doesn’t work out).

      I appreciate your participation and your comment.

  12. says

    Hi Sue Anne

    So after reading this post the biggest risk for me is to overlook their courage to dive into a decision which they have taken without getting it completely safe believing in the fact that every venture does have a risk as being business person we all know that higher the risk higher the return.

    All the awesome bloggers have shared their personal stories regarding to the biggest risk they took in their professional life to reach the excellence where they are now.

    I once read the biggest risk in general is NOT TAKING ANY RISK and this is the spirit of entrepreneurship because winners are most those who ever have loser in their life once or several.

    Falling down is the biggest practical lesson for staying stable. This can be understood by taking the risk the putting our souls for the success of the project that we have venture by doing so.

    Thanks a lot for sharing this very inspirational post and so glad to see several people who I am closely connected with.

    • says

      Hi, Mi,

      I believe that also – that the biggest risk is not taking any risk. It makes for a boring life.

      I’m glad that you enjoyed their stories as much as I did!

  13. says

    Awesome to hear other peoples experiences. I would say the biggest risk I took was leaving my comfortable job 3 years ago to start my freelancing business. It was scary at first, but it opened up a lot of doors. After just 6 months it had gone so well that my wife and I were able to travel for 6 months (while still working online of course) and see some really cool places.

    Chris Hufnagel recently posted…The New Blog Checklist: 25 things you should do with your new blogMy Profile

    • says

      Hi, Chris,

      It IS so scary at first when you leave a job to go out on your own. It’s so great to hear it’s worked out so well for you!

      Thanks for sharing your story.

  14. says

    Hi Sue Anne,
    Thank you for this post, very interesting to learn of all those risks taken by those “big bloggers” .
    One question came to mind, should I take more risks ?
    Which ones?

    And thank you for giving us (me) all those wonderful connections to great bloggers.
    Brigitte recently posted…Transports aux Seychelles.My Profile

    • says

      Hi, Brigitte,

      I believe in taking calculated risks. I write down the pros and cons on paper and then make my decision. I have done that 4 times in my life and have been able to decide on taking the risk every time. (Maybe I just need the validation of paper and pen!)

      Thanks for your comment.

  15. says

    Hi Sue,

    This inspiring post further added to my belief that every great men and women started from somewhere. All the bloggers you have featured are pro bloggers, in fact all of them are mentors to thousands of people and reading about what really brought about the big change in their life is sure meant to stimulate and catapult my humble self not to give up, especially in this blogging journey.

    I am really inspired by the story of Jon Morrow and Ramsay Taplin; those guys are just awesome.

    Thanks for sharing this post, I’m of the belief it will inspire more people towards online success.

    recently posted…10+ Best optimized Google AdSense Ready WordPress themes”
    Dare recently posted…10+ Best optimized Google AdSense Ready wordpress themesMy Profile

    • says

      Hi, Dare,

      I’m so glad you were inspired; I was also. I appreciate your thoughtful comment.


  16. says

    Wow, fantastic collection here, Sue—so honored to be included!

    I summarized my risk as a “trust fall” of sorts, and looking over these answers it looks like that describes nearly every single example here. There’s something to learn from that, I’m sure.
    John Meese recently posted…How CoSchedule Makes Consistent Blogging Look EasyMy Profile

    • says

      Hi, John,

      Thanks for sharing your story with the Successful Blogging Team! You are so right about the ‘trust fall’.

      I appreciate you taking the time to comment today!

  17. Zarayna says

    This was a wonderfully, uplifting and inspiring read. Thank you!
    Thank you, Sue, for arranging this feast and many thanks to all the contributors for lighting up a dull day.
    I wish everyone continued success and hope that I’ll be able to learn from you all albeit more slowly and in a more cowardly – oh sorry, I meant conservative – manner.
    Kindest regards.

    • says

      Hi, Zara,

      I’m so glad you enjoyed reading their stories.

      Thanks for your always delightful comments!

  18. says

    Always enjoy reading your new updates sent to my inbox. It’s great to read what other bloggers have experienced and the success they have achieved over the years. Will definitely make a point of visiting each and every one of your contributors websites for more inspiration! Thanks again Sue for the great posts!
    Robert recently posted…Mystery Island VanuatuMy Profile

    • says

      Hi, Robert,

      You will enjoy each of their blogs! They are all great at what they do and I’m glad I was able to introduce them to you.


  19. says

    Hi Sue

    Thanks for including me in the roundup. I feel happy that I could share my 2 cents with your awesome readers.

    Congratulations on creating this great post. I see that so many bloggers had left their day jobs to follow their passion. It’s truly inspirational how Jon made it and how Ramsay’s big gamble paid off.

    @Pauline I always tell my readers that persistence is the key. Glad you kept doing your “work”. It always pays off. Hope you reach greater heights.

    @Adam and Tor: It was very brave of you guys to take such risks. You guys have that entrepreneurial spirit. Lets see what I do.

    @Matt and Kevin: You guys are inspirational! I actually shifted my focus to studies just when I was starting to make it kind of big. I got a very good job though. Now, after 5 years, I am making a comeback to my passion.Thanks for sharing your experience.

    Thanks again, Sue, for coming up with this post. Shared on all my social accounts 🙂 Keep rocking.


  20. says

    That`s great. Whenever we have a question, we ask expert advice. I love to learn from experts and their advice is really motivating and helpful to boost my blogging passion. You have done a great job by sharing success stories. That`s awesome, I should save it in my bookmark list to get motivation whenever I need.
    Gaurav Kumar recently posted…DoorWay Pages SEO Penalty : Return of Google PandaMy Profile

    • says

      That’s a great idea, Gaurav! I’m so glad you enjoyed the post.

      Thanks for your comment.

  21. says

    Great post Sue and everyone that was featured,

    I especially liked Jon’s, despite having heard the story before. It’s just one of those stories that sound completely surreal. Something you’d expect to see in a movie rather than a success story.

    My own biggest risk is on-going — a refusal to have a boss. I’ve worked one job in my life, it was temporary at a college. I enjoyed it, but I didn’t like having to constantly answer to people. As far as I’m concerned, if you’re hired to do a job — it’s because you know what needs to be done. Micromanaging a worker seems pointless to me, you may as well do the job yourself.

    So after the experience, that again wasn’t even that bad, I decided that for the rest of my life I’d be the boss. No matter how hard it’d be. I didn’t go back to the job, and I dropped out of university to pursue a business venture. It fell through and I was a little lost, but I remembered what I had told myself and started looking for another venture.

    I then re-discovered my love of writing and have been trying to make it as a freelance writer/entrepreneur ever since. It’s still a risk right now, as I’m still working hard on finding clients, but I think a mix of stubbornness, passion and enthusiasm will see that it works out in the end!

    Thanks for the burst of inspiration in this post. Glad to see so many succeeding.
    Jake Mcspirit recently posted…The Minimalist Guide to Self-AcceptanceMy Profile

    • says

      Hi, Jake,

      You were so lucky to discover that NOT having a boss worked best for you. You do have to work hard when you are on your own – probably harder than working for someone else – especially in the beginning, but it pays off in the end.

      Thanks for sharing your story!

  22. says

    What a great collection of bloggers!

    I love what Brian Lee said, “The risk I took was foregoing the security of a great career path.”

    I can totally relate to that. I left my Director-level position last fall to begin blogging and freelancing full-time. It was a little scary at the time, but I’m so glad I did it.
    Brent Jones recently posted…What Is Bounce Rate & Why Does It Matter?My Profile

    • says

      You also took a risk that paid off, Brent! Good to hear.

      Thanks for commenting,

  23. says

    Thanks for getting so many great bloggers together in one place. I imagine it could have felt a bit like herding cats 😉

    I like what Tor said about balancing the job and the business together. It’s a nice lesson for cautious people. Find out if something works and then, if you think the odds are in your favour, try. Sure it’s still scary, but new experiences always are.
    Nico recently posted…5 Copywriting Hacks I Used to Triple On Site Engagement OvernightMy Profile

  24. says

    I absolutely love this post it was so uplifting and it was a great reminder that anything is possible! and another take away was I loved how it was normal people like me and you who went after their dreams! It all starts with you,

    • says

      When our “why” is strong enough, we do what we want to do!

      Thanks for commenting, Steven, and I hope you are sleeping in today.

  25. says

    This is one of the best inspirations i have ever read! First of all i would like to thank you for bringing such people to share their journey with us. After reading this, my spirits are now high and i will keep on fighting till i make it. Although it is so tough, i will keep on trying till i reach where i need to be.
    Also, people reading this should put what Neil of Blogician is saying, don’t take shortcuts by using black SEO.
    The Nairobi Mirror recently posted…Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge unveiled!My Profile

    • says

      So glad the post helped you. So true about Neil’s story.

      Thanks for your comment!

    • says

      Hi, Mei,

      Sometimes you need to take a calculated risk by blogging.

      Thanks for your comment!

  26. Natalia says

    Very good information. Lucky me I found your blog by accident (stumbleupon).

    I’ve book marked it for later!

    • says

      So glad you found me, Natalia! You are now a member of The Successful Blogging Team.

      Thanks for your comment.

  27. says

    Hi sue Anne,
    Thanks for sharing greatest risks of some popular bloggers around the world.

    It is amazing to see how someone risks job, career, established businesses for pursuing their passions.
    I am deeply inspired by Stuart Walker story of taking risk.
    Merely meeting a seo and affiliate marketing guy guidance lead him to take risk with it. He has taken great risk for this goal.
    NARENDRA KUMAR recently posted…3G to 4G Service in India : Current Trends and FutureMy Profile

  28. says

    I’d love to see some comment or feedback from someone my own age (75) who hasn’t grown up or worked in the digital age and who is struggling to make any headway blogging. Not only do I have to learn how to blog, I have to learn how to use my computer in ways in which I had no experience, even to learn how to operate Facebook (still an on-going challenge). But I have dreams and I’m determined to conquer my problems. I’m literate and not stupid but I wish there were more step-by-step “How to..” directions for someone like me who needs taking by the hand and showing how to do stuff. Syndicating my blog is my present hurdle but I’m sure I’ll get there. Anyone else out there like me?


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