Do you remember the excitement you had when you discovered somewhere new to take your loved one for dinner? Perhaps it was the first time you tried to speak a new language knowing that you’d make silly mistakes but that it would bring you immeasurable connections with other human beings. Do you remember what it feels like to discover a world of infinite newness? That sense of wonder and delight is life’s guiding light. It can shine brilliance on any of our experiences, at home and further afield.
Adventure, in that sense, is an embodied philosophy and attitude. It involves being open to seeing the same world in new ways each and every time so as to appreciate its complexities, beauty and mystery. To go on an adventure is to engage in new and exciting life experiences and journeys, and to see the world in new ways and gain new insights. It is to be curious about life and to explore those curiosities. It is to challenge oneself in different ways and learn from those challenges. It is to view the universe as a realm for positive opportunities in compassion, awe, growth and understanding.
Many inspiring adventurers, through disciplined training and hard work, pave the way in exciting adrenaline-bound sports. Their spirit in bold innovation has certainly stirred my own aspiration to follow suit. And yet, adventure can be found anywhere, at any time. Often, an adventure simply involves finding oneself in a new situation with seemingly difficult obstacles, but one that draws from the inner self a sense of excitement in solving perceived problems with creativity and inventiveness. It doesn’t even have to involve sheer determination and hardship. It can be about taking the path of least resistance, of surrendering to seemingly daunting tasks and seeing the beauty anyway. It is about releasing resistance and letting go. There are no mistakes and failures in this attitude. Each attempt is trial and error towards a better appreciation of the self and the world.
Challenging the self in situations of the unknown with gumption, positivity, a sense of fun, spontaneity, inquisitiveness and a curiosity to learn are all part of being adventurous. Most importantly, gaining a little more wisdom and understanding of oneself and humanity is what adventure ultimately engenders. Adventure pushes boundaries, dissolves limitations and brings each of us to our full potential.