After completing the rather adventurous Main Range Track in Kosciuszko National Park as one of my 12 dreams in 2 years challenge, for my next goal I thought I’d sit down and watch other people being adventurous!
I’ve always wanted to attend a screening of the Banff Mountain Film Festival so this year I made the effort to go for the first time. It was fantastic and I can highly recommend it! [The festival finishes up in Australia at Mt Buller on 28 June.]
We watched a selection of 11 films over 3 hours. My favourite was North of the Sun, a film about two young men who built their own shelter out of rubbish on the beach of an Arctic island off the coast of northern Norway, and who then spent the winter surfing and snowboarding.
Of course, the main theme of the films was outdoor adventure. I think adventure—of all kinds—is one way we can live fulfilling and interesting lives. The word ‘adventure’ means something different to each of us and it doesn’t need to be extreme. Doing anything that challenges us is adventurous. I’m fortunate, really, that I find fairly simple things to be adventurous. I don’t need to risk life and limb to get an adrenaline rush!
A comment from one of the films stuck with me—it went something like this: undertaking an adventure feels so good because it focuses all our attention on a single, simple goal. It takes us away from the countless distractions and decisions of everyday life and instead we can put all our energy into surviving and working toward our goal.
Given that big adventures usually take planning and only happen occasionally, I’ve been thinking about how to bring that ‘adventurous spirit’ into daily life. I’ve come up with a few ideas:
- Setting priorities—what are the basics that are really important to me? What is the 20 percent in my life that is important as opposed to the 80 percent that is not?
- Focusing on these priorities and treating them as my ‘adventure goal’—putting in lots of effort, persevering when I encounter setbacks, celebrating small and joyful victories.
- Stripping everything back to the basics—getting rid of clutter (physical and mental), setting boundaries, giving myself fewer choices, removing distractions.
- Immersing myself in my life as it is today, in this moment.
- Having an adventurous attitude—being confident, doing things I say I want to do, pushing through discomfort, setting and steering my own course.
One of my favourite outdoor adventures is hiking in a beautiful place, pushing my physical and mental limits, having a dip in a cold mountain stream, going to bed early—tired and satisfied, and rising early to get stuck into a new day. I can recreate this anytime I like though, by going on a strenuous walk in bushland near my house no matter what the weather, having a cold shower when I get back, a hearty meal, and an early night.
How do you nurture your adventurous spirit?