It’s summer. Perhaps you are as glad as I am to welcome the summer months. And with summer comes vacation time. I’ll be at my little cabin in Maine by the time you read this newsletter – enjoying the sun and the water and picking blueberries next to the lake.
I believe – without any proof about it – that about half the world takes a vacation in the month of July And often when we vacation, we are more adventurous than during any other time. There is something about a new place, or a much loved, familiar place, that allows you to move beyond your routine. Trying new foods, experiences, and meeting new people are all easier on vacation because you have already stepped outside of your usual comfort zone.
That’s using what I call the Spirit of Adventure. So in celebration of vacation time, I am giving you a rundown of what makes up a spirit of adventure in this month’s feature article. My hope is that you will use these ideas to keep your vacation (adventure) spirit alive even after you are back to your day to day life. Even when the things that life deals out to you are challenging or difficult, that Spirit of Adventure can make all the difference.
And in the same spirit, the Monthly Meditation in this issue is deeply personal to me. It’s the lyrics of an old song sung by Mary Chapin Carpenter. Years ago when I was going through a hard time and fighting cancer, this song was my anthem of hope. I loved the message and the tune was upbeat and happy; listening to it never failed to make me feel better. May you also find a song or words of inspiration that uplift you in difficult times in your life.
P.S. – And I’m also in the midst of a small celebration as I have completely redesigned my website. It’s now ready for unveiling and I’m very excited about it. There is lots of new information on the website so please use the links in the main article to go there and explore. I hope you will take the time to visit and read more about ways to get adventurous!
THE SPIRIT OF ADVENTURE
The spirit of adventure is an attitude you hold inside. Getting that spirit means making a subtle but powerful shift within you. It means that you are stepping into each new experience of life with curiosity and possibility. You likely have this spirit from time to time. You can easily recognize it when you have excitement at all that could lie ahead for you and a sense of joy and pride towards the possibilities of making those things happen. It might feel a little scary, but definitely also exciting.
I want you to maintain this spirit within you even when your life is not working out according to expectations. Because of course life will not always go as expected or planned. Yet you can impact your experience of whatever happens by your attitude. And of course when everything is going wonderfully, a spirit of adventure makes it so much more fun…
And there are other results of having a spirit of adventure:
You discover your natural courage.
You become resilient.
You experience joy and success.
You increase your level of contentment and peace.
And so much more…
In my mind, there are several components of being adventurous. Let’s run through them so I can give you the basics. They are:
Tending Your Spirit
Opening to Love
Perhaps the most important and the most neglected component in today’s world is Tending Your Spirit. Your spirit is where your hopefulness, your energy and your motivation reside. Technology has pushed our culture into very unhealthy places for your spirit. It’s so vital that you resist the pressure from your world to always do more and to do it faster. Instead, let taking care of yourself – physically, mentally and emotionally be your top priority. When you do that you’ll find that you are better able to also take good care of your spirit. Have you spent some time paying attention to what your spirit wants and needs? It’s vital to your continued well-being so please find a way to tend YOUR spirit. If you find your spirit in need of some healing, you can read my tips on tending your spirit on the Life Adventure website.
The second component of a spirit of adventure is related. It’s called Living Fully. This means going all out with what you do. Your body, mind and spirit are all in synch when you are Living Fully and they are focused on the present moment. Living Fully requires you to have focus, to have boundaries and to be intentional with your decisions. It requires putting your spirit to work in your life instead of being on autopilot. It’s practically impossible to do if you have been neglecting yourself. When things are going poorly in your life, it’s easy to allow your life to be become routine and plodding, but that is not going to help you in the long run. If you find too much of the same-old, same-old in your life right now, please go to my website for some simple ideas that will help you Live Fully. It’s a great path to more adventure and usually leads to happiness and peacefulness.
Staying Real is the next component. It’s so easy to live in a fantasy world! To escape your reality by watching others’ realities on TV, by surfing the internet and virtually relating to people you will never likely look in the eye and by simply staying so busy you don’t have time to think or feel. Instead, I’m encouraging you to Stay Real and deal with what you have in front of you. You know you are doing this when you feel grounded and calm even if you don’t have all the answers to what life brings along. Staying Real means you are aware of what you don’t know, you are curious, you are in experimentation mode and are open to new ideas and suggestions. The truth is that change takes time. Change may happen in unpredictable ways but if you stay focused and real with the two or three things that matter most to you, you will come out ahead.
One of the most important components of a spirit of adventure is Taking Risks. Not just any risk though, but carefully planned and executed, calculated risks. Personal growth and happiness both require you to get out of your comfort zone and to do things differently. Let me quote directly from my website on this one… what you must know about Taking Risks:
“Here is the tradeoff that life requires of us… You can be always safe or you can experience your full measure of joy. You can’t have both.”
Taking Risks is a matter of getting comfortable with being uncomfortable. It’s finding the risks that are the right ones for you and taking small steps in that direction. Take action. Stay in motion. If you can tap into your courage to take action, you will see your confidence grow and your life begin to flow in new ways. And if you don’t know what would be reasonable, calculated risks in your life, please get help. Hire a coach, take a class, talk to a friend – whatever would help you most. But do get moving. Your life will not change or improve if you do nothing!
Opening to Love is the final essential component in a spirit of adventure. It may be the key to everything else as well…Love is central to our experience as humans. Love is the antidote to fear. It gives us strength and motivation. Love is always about relationships, whether it is your relationship with yourself or with others in your life. The relationships you have are absolutely vital to your health and happiness. A worthwhile exercise is to think about each of your relationships with this yardstick: How does this relationship measure up in terms of trust, safety, privacy, engagement, acceptance and forgiveness? Consider ways to shift yourself within a relationship if it feels lacking in some areas. I know from years of experience that there are particular skills that help you experience more love. Perhaps this is an area you would like to work on in your life. Just read my information about the skills of Opening to Love and choose one or two that you can make changes on. I want you to get started soon so you can have more love in your life.
I hope this article has sparked your interest in developing a spirit of adventure in your life. If you are interested in reading more on any of the components of a spirit of adventure, please check out my newly updated Life Adventure Coaching website. Just click the link here or use one of the links above to read more on that particular topic. If you like what you read on the website, I hope you will leave me a comment there.
Questions from Janet -How much spirit of adventure do you have?Which of the 5 components of the Spirit of Adventure (Tending Your Spirit, Living Fully, Staying Real, Taking Risks, Opening to Love,) do you need more of? What ideas do you have for improving that?
What relationships do you have that provide you love? How can you shift yourself within those relationships to experience even more love?
I Feel Lucky sung by Mary Chapin Carpenter. Written by Donald Alan Schlitz Jr.
Well I woke up this morning stumbled out of my rack
I opened up the paper to the page in the back
It only took a minute for my finger to find
My daily dose of destiny, under my sign
My eyes just about popped out of my head
It said “the stars are stacked against you girl, get back in bed”
I feel lucky, I feel lucky, yeah
No Professor Doom gonna stand in my way
Mmmmm, I feel lucky today
Well I strolled down to the corner, gave my numbers to the clerk
The pot’s eleven million so I called in sick to work
I bought a pack of Camels, a burrito and a Barq’s
Crossed against the light, made a beeline for the park
The sky began to thunder, wind began to moan
I heard a voice above me saying, “girl, you better get back home”
But I feel lucky, oh oh oh, I feel lucky, yeah
No tropical depression gonna steal my sun away
Mmmmm, I feel lucky today
Now eleven million later, I was sitting at the bar
I’d bought the house a double, and the waitress a new car
Dwight Yoakam’s in the corner, trying to catch my eye
Lyle Lovett’s right beside me with his hand upon my thigh
The moral of this story, it’s simple but it’s true
Hey the stars might lie, but the numbers never do
I feel lucky, oh oh oh, I feel lucky, yeah
Hey Dwight, hey Lyle, boys, you don’t have to fight
Hot dog, I’m feeling lucky tonight
I feel lucky, brrrrr, I feel lucky, yeah
Think I’ll flip a coin, I’m a winner either way
Mmmmmm, I feel lucky today
INDIVIDUAL COACHING BY PHONE
Want to stop that feeling that life is passing you by?
Would you like to able to experience your life as an exciting series of adventures?
Would you like to feel more joy and achieve more success?
That is what I help my clients develop in their own lives. Working with a coach helps you overcome the challenges that can keep you from a successful life. Coaching gives you a companion on the journey; someone with whom to discuss events as they unfold and to help you move toward joy in the adventure. Developing clear goals, focusing intently and staying committed become possible.
If you aren’t sure and would like to explore whether coaching is right for you, please send an email to Janet@lifeadventurecoaching.com or call me at 828-691-4655 for a complimentary consultation.