3 Steps to Defining What Adventure Means To You

3 Steps to Defining What Adventure Means To You

 What is adventure, and how do you begin to live it? Merriam-Webster define the term ‘Adventurous’ as the following:

“1. a: disposed to seek adventure or to cope with the new and unknown

an adventurous explorer’


an adventurous artistic style’

2: characterized by unknown dangers and risks

an adventurous journey’

As a matter of fact, if you look at most dictionaries you will find that they define adventure, adventurous, or adventurer in terms willingness to take risk or face unknown dangers of various kinds. Does this mean you have to brave the uncharted jungles of the Amazon in order to be an adventurous adventurer? What about eating balut (a fertilized egg incubated for 14-21 days then steamed after the embryo has begun to develop) in the Philippines? Obviously, these two examples are the epitome of adventure, the definition of adventurous (see above), but my question is this: Do you have to go to such extremes to be an adventurer or be adventurous? I think not.

Fear is the biggest obstacle for people to start being more adventurous. But, mastering your fear is one of the most rewarding aspects of going on an adventure. Overcoming this fear, and the sense of accomplishment at the end of your adventure is powerful. The adrenaline and totality of what you have done can become addictive. The people, places, food, and new experiences leave you craving more.

How does one become more adventurous without having to abandon all caution? Here are three steps to help you figure out your risk tolerance and determine your adventure stepping off point.

  1. Determine what ‘adventure’ mean to you.

One of the easiest ways to determine your personal definition of adventure is to examine the things that hold your interest. What books inspire you? Are you a Potterhead, or is Clive Cussler more to your liking? What movies do you enjoy watching? Do you enjoy a rollicking adventure like the National Treasure franchise, or do you prefer the Pirates of the Caribbean movies? Which is your go-to music that you use to get you pumped up and excited? Does Rock-n-Roll get your heart rate up, or does Abba get you ready to rumble like it did for former heavyweight champion George Foreman?

  1. What type of adventure suits you?

Are you ready to jump right in and go get your SCUBA certification so you can start exploring your local water features? Or would you rather plan out road trips to visit all the National Parks where you can stay in hotels along the way? Do you yearn to spend a week in Yurt on the Mongolian Steep? Even if you find that you are more suited to taking a weekend trip to an environment you are not accustomed (big city hotel and dinner, or lakeside B&B), this is still an adventure.

  1. Write it down.

Once you have defined what adventure means to you, write down the things that excite you. Be specific. The more detailed the better. Take as much time as you need to do this, but spend at least 30 minutes AT A MINIMUM to do this. Do you want to experience more of the outdoors? Great! Write down everything about the outdoors that you would like to do. Camping at the base of Mt. St. Helens? Write out everything you are going to need to make that happen. Cage diving with great white sharks along the Great Barrier Reef? Amazing! What equipment do you need to get in order to do that? Are you going to go on a live-in boat trip to do this, or are you going to travel by train across the Great Sandy Desert? Maybe take a side trip to Uluru while your there and really become an adventurer.

It all starts with you determining to hurdle that largest of obstacles to adventuring: the initial fear of getting out of your comfort zone. Once you do you will not regret it.  You may even kick yourself for waiting so long to get started.

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