I have a confession to make. I’m an adventure-holic. I love adventure. I get bored doing the same thing every day. I dislike routine and nothing depresses me more than being stagnant in my life. I love feeling free. I need to be challenged. I want to experience more of life because after all life, itself, is an adventure. Give me more life!
Adventure can mean different things to different people. It can be an adventure to start a bakery business, to take up knitting, to dye your hair purple, bike ride across the country or have a child. Travel of course, is adventure in it’s more purest form, and my favourite adventure of all, in case you didn’t already know.
Adventure is absorbing yourself into something you’re unfamiliar with. It’s stepping out of your comfort zone and into that raunchy, lacy, Victoria’s Secret number for instance. It’s meeting challenges face to face with your head up, bold lipstick on and your eyes wide open. It’s doing something brave. Growing as a person. Learning lessons that can change you for life.
“Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all” – Helen Keller.
If you’re not changing, evolving, challenging yourself, growing, adapting, learning and moving, then you’re dead, or may as well be.
Do you feel sometimes like you’re living groundhog day? Like every day is the same with the same routines and habits? Maybe you eat the same foods or go to the same places with the same people?
I used to feel that no matter how long I had been away travelling, nothing had changed where I had left. I would meet up with old friends and realise after an hour or so that we were having the same conversation we’ve had before. That we’ve had many times before. #Awkward. Because nothing significant had changed in their lives in a long time and they were reliving their highlight or lowlight reel.
Think back over the past couple of years. What can you say that you’ve done that you’re proud of or that has made a significant impact in your life. I’m not necessarily talking something huge like bungee jumping or parasailing or saving a child from a burning building. Of course that last one would earn you major kudos points. Just something that’s worth writing in your memoirs perhaps.
I like to use birthdays as an excuse to do something big. For example for my 25th birthday I swam with dolphins off the coast of Miami. My 26th birthday I treated myself to a stay in an Irish castle outside of Dublin (4-poster bed and everything!). My 29th was a solo trip to Tenerife, Spain where I laid on the beach and drank fruity cocktails. My 30th was a somewhat pilgrimage journey to the country where my parents are from, Burma. Ok, mine involve a lot of travel, but you get the picture.
Every now and then, it’s a good idea to get out of your routine and escape your comfort zone. Give yourself something different to mull over, focus on, indulge in or experience. Get a different perspective. Let your soul breathe.
Some people fear adventure. They fear the unknown and hate change. They do anything they can to keep the situation or person or life just the same because it’s safe for them. It’s security. I get it. It’s warm and comfy in our adult onesies, watching netflix and eating donuts. When we know what to expect and what’s going to happen, we feel safe. But life shouldn’t always be like that. It might feel like a good thing to do at the time, but looking at the big picture view…it will end up in regret, muffin top and disappointment. No one wants that.
Think about a situation you were in 5 years ago. What if you had stayed in that situation without change. What would you have missed out on having that you have now. Maybe a job? A child? A relationship? A house? Great hair? A collection of minature doll collectables? Your own business? Time? Don’t miss out on new opportunities that could put you in a better situation or make you a better person just because you can’t let go.
You just have to let some things run their course and then you need to move on from them. Don’t let something become stale and leave you with regret or bitterness about life. Don’t let it harden you. Live life without regrets. Roll with the punches.
Even if you try something and fail, don’t regret it. You tried. The only regret would be if you didn’t even try. Every failure is a lesson of what not to do. Just like every relationship that fails is a lesson of what you don’t want, not just who you don’t want, in your life. Learn from the lesson to avoid making the same mistake again and move forward. Never look back, you’re not going that way.
To make mistakes is only human. We can’t and shouldn’t avoid things because we could fail. That’s fear talking. Any challenge will help you grow and become stronger in character, not just knowledge. Earn your experience points.
How do you get more adventure in your life? It could be a small as starting a new hobby or side hustle, going camping, going to a new gym, discovering a new coffee shop or taking a different route to work.
Celebrate your next birthday, if not with others, do something for yourself. It’s a milestone. You made it alive this long! That’s an achievement and a blessing.
Shake things up a bit and notice how new opportunities open up for you when you put yourself out there. Travel. For the love of all things ravioli, travel. I can’t recommend it enough.
Travel is throwing yourself in the deep end of adventure…without a floatation device…when you can’t even swim. Sometimes it’s scary, sometimes exhilarating but always new and different. Besides, you know you can float, right?
I’ve lived in 9 different cities in 7 different countries. Each one felt like I got a chance to live a different life. I had different friends, different jobs, different housing situations. Two of them were in countries where I didn’t speak the language. Talk about being out of your comfort zone. Each had their own places I liked to eat at, food I’d become fond of or bars to drink and party in. They all had their own stories, friendships and experiences. #Bliss.
Travel teaches you so much about the world and different cultures and peoples, but it also teaches you a lot about yourself. Especially if you’re travelling alone. You learn what you’re capable of and maybe new skills you didn’t know you had. You learn how to become resilient, how to deal with different people and adapt to situations that are out of your control. You learn to let go of control. To go with the flow.
“To travel is to take a journey into yourself” – Danny Kaye
It can teach you what you really want out of life. What matters most to you. It might make things clearer as to what path to take. When you’re stripped down to finding the bare necessities, food, water, shelter, wifi… you’re not bogged down and clouded by the unimportant stuff. You know what matters.
These are all things that no one can teach you or take away from you. This is growth. That’s why they say, travel is the best education and the only thing you buy that makes you richer.
No matter what adventure you take on. No matter what challenges you face or obstacles that block your way. Embrace it. Embrace the change. Change is good. Change is growth and change is life. Don’t fight it. You’ll get through it. And you’ll be better for it. You’re stronger and more capable than you know. Life is all about experience, not the things that you have. So don’t be afraid to live more life.