40 Risks Everyone Should Take Before Turning 40

As if 30 wasn’t stressful enough—40 is now here and you might be grasping with the concept of a new decade. If so, consider this your permission slip, bucket list, checklist, and complete guide to taking the risks you were born to make.

Say “no”

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Though there is merit in saying “yes’” to things outside your comfort zone, Erica Korman, psychotherapist, psychic, and spiritual life expert, also stresses the importance of “no.” Even if you don’t know exactly why you don’t want to do something, work with a certain person, or have a specific experience—taking a risk in declining an opportunity builds character. “At mid-life it’s time to realize that life is short and there is not time to waste on things that don’t feel good or right to you,” she says. Start with learning these effective ways to say “no” without worrying that someone will think badly of you.

Go for the promotion

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Far too few people get out of a career rut and actually roll up their sleeves to earn the promotion they’re deserving of, says entrepreneur Toni Patillo. And it isn’t skill that’s holding them back—but confidence. Sound like someone you know? “Somewhere in your head, there is doubt and worry. Get out of your head and go to your heart to get clarity around what it is exactly that you want,” she says. Next, take action on it by writing it down, creating an affirmation around it, and saying it out loud. “Then set an appointment with the person who has the authority to make decisions and ask for what you want,” she advises. Follow these can’t fail tips to land that promotion.

Go skydiving

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There is nothing quite like the rush, the thrill, and the good vibes that come from jumping out of an airplane. Since it is a literal risk, you will likely be afraid, but you also might come away with a new perspective, too. “In addition to having a lot of fun and creating a memory you will never forget, skydiving will give you a wealth of breakthroughs,” Patillo says. “Not only does it get you out of your comfort zone, you will learn how to deal with your fears,” she notes.

Forgive yourself

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If you have somehow made it to the ripe age of 40 and have zero regrets or no leftover angst from past decisions—you’re truly a rare breed. As you reach this new decade in your life, Jaclyn Mellone, business and life coach, urges you to move forward. “Drop the guilt, shame, and woulda-coulda-shouldas to give yourself some grace.” To do this, find the gratitude. “When you find the gratitude for each and every step along the way, especially the ones you regret, you will feel lighter, happier, and begin to appreciate your journey,” she advises. Don’t miss these 14 things science can teach you about forgiveness