Go for It on National All or Nothing Day

Whatever your dream is, big or small, practical or fantastical, there's one day above others you're encouraged to take a leap of faith and go for it. On National All or Nothing Day, which falls on July 26 every year, Americans everywhere have the perfect excuse to take a risk, bend a rule or two, and generally put their necks on the line in make or break endeavors.

All or Nothing Day origins

It seems somehow fitting that nobody seems to know exactly what the origin of National All or Nothing Day is. The term itself originates in the stock market, and denotes a day where more than 400 stocks in the Standard & Poor's 500 move in the same direction. However, no obvious connection to a specific occurrence of an "all or nothing day" on July 26 stands out, since there have been no major crashes on that day. Historical records tend to be collated by month, making identification of days when stocks surged a much harder proposition.

Perhaps it's a tribute to the Cuban revolutionary guerilla force that took its name from a failed attack on the Moncada Barracks in Santiago de Cuba on July 26,1953. Certainly, the date has no shortage of revolutionary connections:

  • July 26, 1533, marked the end of 300 years of Inca civilization when Spanish conquistadors strangle Emperor Atahualpa.
  • In 1581 on this day, the northern Low Countries declared independence from Philip II of Spain.
  • In 1847 repatriated ex-American slaves in the country of Liberia declared their independence.
  • In Buenos Aires in 1890, the Revolucion del Parque forced the resignation of President Juarez Celman.
  • The Potsdam Declaration, stating the terms of Japanese surrender at the end of World War II, was signed in Potsdam, Germany, in 1945.
  • This day in 1957 saw the assassination of Carlos Castillo Armas, dictator of Guatemala.
  • On July 26, 1974, the Greek prime minister, Constantinos Karamanlis, ended seven years of military rule by forming his civil government.

Of course you don't have to start a revolution to get into the spirit of National All or Nothing Day, you just have to take a deep breath, cross your fingers and take a chance.

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