We lived on a cattle ranch in the rugged mountains of Wyoming when I was a child. Every day after school my brother and I would gather up our stick guns and grandmother’s rusty old traps and set off to explore the world around us.
In my mind, I was Daniel Boone on a daring adventure because the ranch house was surrounded by thousands of acres of rocks, rattle snakes, mountains, rivers, and wildlife—for a kid with an imagination, it was Candyland on steroids.
My brother and I went to a small school with only two students—it was just he and I. We played with abandon all year long as we let the sun heat up our backs and the cold winters nip at our heels. When I recall my childhood stories, I tell people about riding over a rattle snake on my bicycle, getting bucked off my horse and landing in a barbed wire fence, getting lost in the mountains trying to find a great-uncle’s moonshine still, and watching a mountain lion attack an old horse on the east meadow.
Perhaps these things were not safe by today’s standards, but for me they held the pulse of life . . . my childhood was not boring and this was one of the greatest gifts God could have given me—an appreciation for adventure. I still hear the call to adventure through an inner voice, beckoning me to something that moves me beyond the ordinary—and yes, beyond what is safe, sometimes.
You, too, have the ability to hear your inner voice calling you to explore new frontiers of your life if you will listen for it. The sound will be different for everyone but that is what makes us wonderful and unique.
“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” Mary Oliver
The call to explore your own life is the day in which you decide to take leadership of it. A strong mind needs no apologies or excuses. You empower yourself, so there is no one to lean on, rely on, or blame. Life is an amazing journey—and you alone are responsible for the quality of it. It is not an obligation; it is an adventure.
What will you do with your newly developed sense of adventure? It means you can lead a more fulfilled and meaningful life, one that is closer to your true nature so you will be leading with a strong mind and your natural strengths. It means you will have the mental toughness to live with more intention than ever before, because instead of reacting to events around you, you will be creating the events around you.
A life of adventure is devoted to something bigger, better, and bolder than yourself. It is steeped in a curiosity about self and others that inspires, energizes, and pulls you forward. As an explorer, you utilize to your unique talents and look back on a life of significance rather than regret.
Never ask, “Can I do this?” Instead ask, “How can I do this?”
Once you have awoken the potential inside, you will have no alternative but to follow your heart and take the path that reveals itself to you. It will continue to be a journey because you will always be living on the frontier—no tame suburban existence for you!
Here are 14 ways to live life as an adventure:
- Start a project in which you have no skill.
- Set a goal where there is a chance you will fail—and learn to fail gracefully.
- Join a new philanthropic group in your community.
- Read a book on a topic you know nothing about.
- Travel to one new place this year.
- Start a conversation with a total stranger.
- Invite someone who has never been to your house over for dinner.
- Make a request of someone who has rejected you.
- Make 5 new friends this year.
- Learn martial arts.
- Prepare a gourmet meal.
- Read an inspirational poem.
- Do something spiritual.
- Do something spontaneous this week.
“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.” Helen Keller (click to tweet)
To live a life of adventure takes courage because you will be moving from the safety and predictability of the known into the volatile and changeable landscape of the unknown. It is the responsibility of the explorer to find a way. As you empower the leader within, you will find that nothing is impossible.
What tips can you share about the way in which you make your life an adventure? What are the marks of a good adventure?