Adventure.

The very word stirs the soul and makes us long to get out there and do something epic and amazing.

But what does adventure mean to you? People are wonderfully diverse so what adventure may mean to one person may be entirely different to what means for somebody else.

For example, for one person the word adventure may mean walking the length of the Nile, or thrashing their way across a remote country for weeks on end, whereas for another person it may mean taking a solo trip to the next town. For some people having an adventure may mean overcoming or working with an illness or disability and a short trip would be as epic and meaningful to them as the most extreme trek to a hardened explorer.

Of course, for most people their idea of adventure will fall somewhere within those two extremes. If you are serious about having a more adventurous life, you will need to define exactly what adventure means to you… if you know what type of adventures you want then you will be able to measure whether you have succeeded.

So I want you to take a few minutes out, grab a sheet of paper and get a few thoughts down on what the word adventure conjures up for you. Don’t try to censor your thoughts at this stage, just jot down whatever comes into your mind. Write down all of the feelings and activities you associate with adventure, plus adventures you think you would like to experience.

Now draw a circle around the things that resonate most with you- the things that give you a little buzz when you read them back. You are getting close to what adventure really means to you here. However it is important to be honest with yourself- make sure it really does resonate with you and you haven’t written it down because you think you should. For instance, don’t write down ‘cross Australia on foot’ just because you think it sounds adventurous and like something you should want to do, but don’t really. Equally don’t sell yourself short and avoid jotting down things you would really love to do but don’t think you will ever be able to due to time/ cost etc. Don’t censor yourself!

So now you should have a list of experiences that would feel like an adventure for you, and also a list of positive feelings you associate with the word. The key is to choose the adventures that resonate with you and which match these feelings. If an adventure doesn’t feel right (and I am not talking about those slight feelings of fear or ‘I can’t do this’ that increase just before you do it- they’re normal I’m afraid!) then chances are it’s not right for you. But if thinking about it makes you feel energised, excited and positive then go for it!

You should hopefully have a mix of smaller adventures you can do regularly or tick off fairly soon and more ambitious trips that will take some planning or saving up for. You should also be adding to your list all the time- once you try an activity for instance you may be tempted to take it a little further or try something related. Once you get one longer and more ambitious trip under your belt, you may have the confidence to plan an even longer one.

There are no right or wrong adventures- just those that resonate for you. Don’t feel inadequate because someone else is trekking across Mongolia and you are ’only’ walking a couple of days along a local National Trail. An adventure is defined as an exciting or unusual experience so anything that gets you feeling excited, maybe a little scared, and out of your comfort zone counts.

This is your adventurous life and you get to choose how you live it!


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