Living an adventurous lifestyle can be simple. For me, it is to spend more time outdoors and step out of my comfort zone regularly. The ever growing amount of commercialism and unnecessary expense can make being an adventurer seem to be something only the elite can do. This not true.
This post will highlight the 4 mistakes aspiring adventurers often make so you don’t follow in their path.
1. You don’t need to quit your job and travel the world to be an adventurer
This piece of advice is probably the thing that annoys me the most with the adventure community. Becoming unemployed and travelling the world with little purpose does not make you an adventurer. I am all for travelling the world and completing human-powered expeditions. Taking a sabbatical, gap year or career break is also a great option for many people but it is not the only option.
There are countless accounts of people that live the city life, get bored, hate their job and find happiness and fulfilment from quitting their job and travelling the world. There is nothing wrong with doing this if you feel this is the correct path for you but you don’t NEED to do it to be an adventurer.
Do what you feel is right for you, not what the crowd are doing. If that means working in IT, banking or consultancy, and that brings value to your life go for it. If you utterly despise your job and want to quit so you can live a more fulfilling life, my advice is to plan ahead. Ask yourself:
- What brings value to my life?
- What skills do I have that are unique to me?
- Where do I see myself in 5 years time?
- What are the important things/people/places in my life?
- What are my goals for the next 2 years?
Hopefully, these questions will bring answers that will help you to better plan a brighter and more meaningful future.
2. You don’t need a blog/website/book deal to be an adventurer
Rich advice from the dude with a blog but hear me out.
Some of the most adventurous people in the world have no website, blog or any other form of self-promotion. When I was trekking in Nepal earlier this year, the guides and porters would definitely be considered to be adventurous by any Western standards. These people would see themselves as fathers, providers and workers first. Guiding tourists in the mountains can be dangerous and hard work. The stuff book deals are made off. They are not too bothered about their Instagram feeds and if their journeys will make good stories. They do for enjoyment and to make a living.
I started this blog because I want to tell stories and add value to other people’s lives. Writing on here is a hobby that doesn’t provide me with any notable income. I have no advertisements and the only money I have made is through the occasional affiliate links to Amazon products I genuinely use and recommend (we’re talking pennies).
Having an adventure website does not make me an adventurer. My mindset does.
3. It not about the gear
All the gear, no idea is a phrase often used in military circles. This phrase exists for a reason.
Gear is not as important as most people make out. A great example of how kit and equipment is not important is the adventure by the very funny George Mahood who cycled with his friend from Lands End to John o’ Groats with no money. They had to rely on the kindness of strangers to get from the most southern tip of the UK to the top. The book is an excellent read, very inspiring and will make you think twice when you are considering spending hundreds on that new down jacket. It’s a great example of how gear is not important for adventure.
4. London is not the only place to live as an adventurer
I’ve never quite understood why so many adventurous people choose to live in the most polluted, cluttered, congested and constrained place in the UK. As a Northerner, being in London is still a bit uncomfortable for me. The people in London are not as friendly as in the North, that is a fact. Trying to spark up a conversation with a stranger on public transport in London is only going to attract frowns and dismissal. In Yorkshire, you’re likely to struggle to escape the conversation once it has started.
I guess that many people will live in London due to the strong sense of community there. No other city can compare to the numbers of people that attend adventure events or festivals. I have enjoyed first hand the green spaces that London has to offer with a wild camp with the YesTribe. This recent video by Alastair Humphreys shows that there is plenty of green space in our Capital.
If you are planning to make a career from adventure, London is not the only option. I would much rather live on the doorstep of the Lake District, Snowdonia or the Highlands. London is the right place to live for many but do not feel that you have to live there because of the misconception that it is the only place to live in the world.
You can live an adventurous life anywhere.
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