taking on risks

Photo: Sam Bloomberg-Rissman/Blend Images/Getty Images

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3. Confront the Risks

You might think that projecting certainty will get your loved ones to buy into your goal, but often it's being honest and vulnerable about the stakes that can really activate your support system. When Cynthia (C.J.) Warner, a former BP executive, craved a career change, she sat down with her husband and two teenage kids and candidly shared the potential consequences. They would have to return to the United States from England, where they'd lived for a decade. There would be less money...or even no money for a time. On the plus side, she'd be developing renewable energy. "My kids were captivated," says Warner. "My son said, 'That's so cool, Mom; you've got to do it,' and my husband was supportive, too. So I dove in." Now she is executive vice president of Tesoro, a thriving firm that develops clean fuel solutions for transportation.