by Emma Carville

To live would be an awfully big adventure.

– From Peter Pan, by James Matthew Barrie

Do you remember when you were a child and a simple trip to the supermarket was the ultimate adventure?  Wandering out of sight from your parents and perusing the tall aisles alone (albeit for a few moments) was such an audacious thing to do! However, as we grow older, our associations with adventure seem to change and become much more extreme. We go further and further from home, searching for that same sense of wonder. We jump from higher and higher heights (figurative a literal) to get that same rush of adrenaline. Or, we don’t. And if we don’t, does that make us unadventurous?

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, adventure is ‘an exciting or very unusual experience OR participation in exciting undertakings.’ So perhaps, the real question here is: what are the ‘closer-to-home’ opportunities for excitement, and thus, ADVENTURE that we are overlooking?

Here are a few different ideas to inspire the daredevil in you…

Getting out of your comfort zone is in itself a a daring feat. You’re taking a risk by doing something you wouldn’t normally do. Again, this doesn’t need to be anything extreme, something as simple as trying a new dish when all you ever order is a Thai Red Curry.

Conquering a fear is something which is not only adventurous, but truly admirable. Whether you’re afraid of water or a fear of heights is what has kept you away from funfairs your whole life, there are always small steps you can take to over-coming your fear. You might be terrified at first, but rumour has it that once you start making small wins, the process becomes exciting as much as it is scary.

Telling someone how we truly feel often seems like it’s the riskiest adventure of all.

Taking a new route to work for a change of scenery offers you the chance to discover new sights and places or indeed, new people.  If striking up conversation with your fellow commuter or asking questions to the person reading a book which has been on your list isn’t something you’d normally do then, why not try it? Life is filled with endless opportunities for us to take. Every day holds a chance for adventure if we allow ourselves to take it. 

Telling someone how we truly feel often seems like it’s the riskiest adventure of all. Sometimes we might even rather travel to the other side of the globe than to be honest with a certain someone. Frightening and exhilarating, the somersaults in your stomach akin to the roller-coaster, honesty can be one of the boldest things we do. Here is some advice, send the text; make the call; get it off your chest. You’ll regret the chances you didn’t take.

Choose the outfit that you love but ‘isn’t very me’ and make it you. Fashion is an excellent outlet for self-expression and it’s one of the boldest statements you can make – just look at Lady Gaga and her red carpet looks!  Booking a hairdresser appointment for a new colour or style is a cathartic rite of passage for a lot of people too. If you’re a real risk taker you might even get a fringe– the epitome of adventurous in the salons. 

Speaking of Salons, people often call the first time they come to the Conversation Salons an adventure. It’s not often you get the chance to sit at a table with three people you’ve just met to discuss topics you’ve just read in depth. Yet it is so rewarding. And some even say that a conversation can be the greatest adventure of all. 

While it’s easy to associate adventure with all those travel posts you see on your Instagram feed, you should try to emulate it in your own way and be your own definition of the word.  

So, what does adventure mean to you?