Re-igniting your Sense of Adventure
Ah, adventure, such a beautiful word. According to the dictionary, it refers to ‘an undertaking usually involving danger and unknown risks’ or ‘an exciting or remarkable experience.’
Do you remember when was the first time you went on an adventure?
It is probably safe to say that none of us really remember. As young kids, every day seems like an adventure. I mean, again, I don’t personally remember, but I see kids around, toddlers learning to walk and climb up chairs & down steps; I spend time with a 7 and a 9-year-old and both of them come back from school with so many stories, it feels like every day is filled with the new, the shiny, the attractive, the interesting and the challenging.
Isn’t it interesting how we somewhat - if not completely - forget about how we, adults, also get to go on adventures? Just like kids do, we have the opportunity to see every day as adventures, filled with risks and the unknown, filled with potentially exciting, remarkable experiences and learning opportunities.
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But let’s be honest, it’s hard. I have yet to meet someone who wakes up in the morning and wonders what adventures await for the new day.
Traveling makes it easier for us to be adventurers; I love to travel and the minute I book a plane/bus/train ticket to somewhere new (or old but different), I know adventure awaits and my mood lightens up. Although traveling isn’t always easy - each destination has their own set of challenges, depending on who you go with, how you get there, how you travel and what for - surely, the adventure involved in traveling makes people happy and excited.
So what is it that makes traveling so special,
what is it that makes us feel adventurous?
Maybe the feeling of packing, picturing the clothes you’ll wear in the places and spots you’re yet to explore. Maybe it’s the trip to the airport, always the same and yet always different in how it feels. Is it the butterflies in your stomach upon landing, the idea that you’re there, in the new place, eyes ready for the colors, the architecture, the smells? The difference of temperature, maybe, between the place you left and the new one, the quality of the air, who knows. Or dropping your bag in your new room, discovering the space that’s going to be your bedroom for a few nights. You feel it, there, getting ready to leave your temporary home, your trip is going to be full of never-before situations, exciting experiences and risky endeavours. Maybe it’s a combination of everything, then, that makes us feel adventurous when traveling.
But more importantly, why is it so hard to keep the spirit of the adventurer back at home? Why can’t we feel just as curious and excited at home as when we’re away?
Although my chances of sounding like a broken record are high,
I’ll say it…
It’s the mindset, my friend (you knew it was coming). It’s up to us, inside, and doesn’t depend on external stimulations. Of course, they help; the external newness helps. But what hinders us from paying attention to the smells, the temperatures on our skin, the colors on the streets, the changes in seasons, our neighbors, life around us? What prevents us from being aware of our surroundings and the small everyday mysteries, the ones we think we know, live, that feel so familiar?
That’s the reality. The place you call home is probably exciting to the people who come to explore it. So, this is yet another invitation for you to think about how you can be more adventurous, how you can choose curiosity over boredom, judgment, fear even, and let yourself be surprised by the (somewhat hidden) everyday magic. Strike conversations with strangers on the bus and look at them in the eyes; try new places to eat; pay attention. It doesn’t get much more complicated than that...