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When surf photographer, Chris Burkard sees freezing water, he sees joy. You might doubt him at first, but as Chris describes it, “anything that is worth pursuing is going to require us to suffer, just a little bit.”

Many of us are afraid to do things that run the risk of pain or suffering, whether it’s in our work or in any part of our lives. But Chris’ success serves as a reminder a career path wrought with challenges and risks can actually be the most fulfilling. “Any career… has the danger of becoming monotonous,” he warns. It doesn’t matter how jealousy-inducing it seems. When he started to feel suffocated by the surface level life of luxury on the exotic islands surf photographers usually spend all their time, he began to crave for new places that gave him “clarity and a connection with a world that [he] knew [he] would never find on a crowded beach.”

Check out Chris’s amazing TED talk below to see his visually stunning TED talk on why “there are no shortcuts to joy.”

Maria Brango is an aspiring journalist and 2015 America Needs You Fellow. In her first two years of college she has become a community leader and has been nominated for the Newman Civic Fellow Award representing Queensborough Community College. She works as a private tutor and is the 2016 spring LITG marketing intern. Maria loves broadcast journalism and hopes that her work as an editor of the Communique Newspaper and passion for journalism will guide her through her journey of becoming an influential news anchorwoman. You can connect with her on Twitter @marycamiz.

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