A few days ago someone told my husband about a change that they wanted to make in their life. He knows that my husband and I have had a crazy couple of years picking up and moving out of state and that we’re getting ready to do it again. He told my husband that he just isn’t “adventurous” like we are.
Last week I was also scrolling through my Facebook feed from the past few years and noticed that someone else described us this way as well. That was surprising to us because we wouldn’t describe ourselves that way.
Unconventional—probably. A little crazy—sure. But, not adventurous.
This got us talking about our life and adventure. When I think of adventure I think of exciting. I think adventurous people are bold and confident.
When we look at the past several years of our life, those aren’t the words that come to mind. So, I started wondering, maybe I had the wrong definition of “adventure”.
When I think of adventure, I think of the results. I look at things that adventurous people have done and see the rewards of it. The fun they had, the growth they experienced, and the memories they made. It seems exciting and maybe even a little glamorous.
What is an adventure?
Well, that whole conversation led me to do a little digging on the word “adventure”. (I know, I know! I’m a super cool freelance writer so looking up words in the dictionary is just something I do.)
Here’s what I found at the Merriam Webster website:
- an undertaking usually involving danger and unknown risks
- the encountering of risks
- an exciting or remarkable experience
- an enterprise involving financial risk
- to expose to danger or loss
- to take the risk
That surprised me. Only one of those talked about something exciting. All the rest talked about risk and danger. Does that sound scary to anyone else?
What’s this really look like?
I’ve had plenty of situations in life that have involved risk. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I’ve done a lot of “dangerous” things. But, we have done the following:
- Started several businesses
- Quit jobs without having the income to replace it
- Sold a house without having a real plan of where to move
- Packed up and moved our family to Florida without a place to live lined up
- Relocated last minute from Florida to Kentucky
So, yeah there was some risk involved. Sometimes a lot. And, while we haven’t climbed any mountains, wrestled any lions, or sailed around the world, I guess it could qualify as an adventurous life based on the definition.
What does an adventurous life feel like?
Scary as all get-out!
And, that’s just what my level of an “adventurous life” feels like. I can’t speak for those people out there that are conquering all kinds of things. But, if this is what my life feels like at times. I can only imagine what it feels like for those that are out there doing big things.
My husband and I were chatting about this during our conversation. We always think of adventure as something huge, thrilling, and fun. But, that’s not always what adventure feels like.
In fact, a lot of those really good benefits that adventure gives you like confidence, excitement, personal growth, and great memories don’t always show up until the actual “adventurous” thing is over.
Until that happens you feel:
- Scared and afraid
- Like you might be making a huge mistake
- Like everyone else thinks you’ve lost it
How to live an adventurous life
Ok, if you’re looking for tips on how to sell everything and move to the other side of the world, I might not be able to help you. But, if you’re just looking to add a little adventure to your life or to really start living life like you want, here are the tips that I can share from my own life:
- You have to be willing to be uncomfortable. Taking risk doesn’t feel good. But, if you always go with what feels comfortable, you won’t do a lot of the things that you really want to do in life. I promise. I know you don’t want to believe this, but it’s true. You have to be willing to get out of your comfort zone even though it’s going to feel bad.
- You have to take control of your feelings. Yes, we all have feelings. Yes, emotions are real. But, you should not be living life in a way that your feelings control what you say and do. That’s just not a balanced way to live. I know because I’ve done it.
- You have to be willing to move forward without knowing all the steps. From my own experience, to get to do the things that I’ve really wanted to do, I’ve had to just start trying things. You might misstep from time to time and then you do your best to correct your course and get going again. Make sure you do your research and learn what you can, but at some point, if you want to make progress you’re going to have to start taking action. It’s super easy to get stuck in the “research” phase of doing the thing you dream of doing. But, if you really want to do it, at some point you have to take action.
- You have to stop asking for everyone’s opinion. When you do things that not a lot of people in your life do, they aren’t going to know how to encourage you to do it. You have to be discerning about who you ask for advice from. Then, when you make your decision on what you’re going to do, stop asking for advice. If all you’re doing is looking for someone to reassure you that you’re on the right path, stop. Do your research, ask advice from someone experienced, and then get going.
Have an adventure
Please don’t think at all that I’m trying to portray that I have some crazy wonderfully adventurous life. My life feels incredibly ordinary and often overwhelming. That’s what surprised me about the comments that we’ve received. But, I do see that there are areas of life that we had to overcome our fears and take a risk in order to live life in the way that we desire to.
And, I’ve learned that the more we take those steps, the more steps there are to take. And, each one allows us to build a life that we are enjoying more and more all the time.