The results are in from yesterday’s poll, where I asked my adoring fan base (humor me) what it is that prevents them from having more adventures.
“$$$” took the lead early on, eventually coming out on top with 33% of the votes. “Other” came in a close second with 27% of the votes. Responses for “Other” varied, with voters reporting “family,” “physical limitations,” “nothing,” and more as reasons why they aren’t having more adventures.
“Lack of skills” and “Excuses” accumulated 13% of the vote, with “Nasty weather” and “Who has time for adventure?!” only receiving 7% of the vote. The remaining options—”Scary animals,” Scary people,” “Fear of the unknown,” “Lack of gear”—all received zero votes.
When I created this poll, I had reasonable solutions in mind for each option. Short on money? Save more. Can’t find the time? Max out your weekend. Lack of skills? Find a buddy.
But then my good blogging buddy, Alex Autin, pretty much blew my mind with the following observation:
“‘Excuses’ is the only real answer. Everything else falls under that category. Little kids find incredible adventure in a small patch of backyard or playground. They don’t look for excuses, they only look for fun.”
Chew on that for a minute. “Excuses” is the only real answer. Everything else falls under that category.
Alex’s comment really got me thinking. As adventurous types, we live with an insatiable urge to do it all and conquer the world. Our adventures often put us in far-flung corners of the earth, facing challenges we never thought possible.
What good is this thinking if we currently lack the funds, or the time, or the skills? We’ll spend most of the year wishing for that one big, expensive adventure, when adventure abounds right there in your neck of the woods. Talk about lost opportunity.
Alex is so spot on. Like most kids, I would spend countless hours exploring the woods barefoot near my house, riding my bike to new, “undiscovered” spots, building top secret forts, and getting dirty as hell in the process.
Through it all, I didn’t spend a dime.
(OK, maybe I did deduct a few dollars from my adventure expense account for the occasional cold bottle of Sioux City Sarsaparilla and a pack of Big League Chew. Hey, adventuring is hard work!)
Alex’s comment also falls right in line with the philosophies of adventurer Alastair Humphreys, who was recently a 2012 National Geographic Adventurer of the Year nominee. A man who has accomplished much when it comes to adventure now advocates “microadventures,” small, local trips that begin and end at your doorstep.
“I started to think that it was possible to have an adventure anywhere. That it was really just a state of mind, committing to get off your backside. If that were true, I figured you could do this anywhere,” Humphreys told National Geographic.
So think about all of this next time you start making excuses. Money, time, and a lack of skills might hold you back from the big adventure around the corner. You’ll get there some day with proper planning.
In the meantime, step outside and start your adventure now.
If you need additional motivation, check out this great post on “Excusology“ from another blogging buddy, trikatykid.