Addressing the cliché
Someone—anyone who has ever had a blog, probably—once said, “The hardest part of any journey is taking that first step.” When I started writing this, I agreed with that idea and planned on discussing why it is true. The more I thought about it, though, I began to change my mind. There are many cases where this cliché is just simply not true. Examples: I assume actually summiting Mt. Everest is much harder than buying a plane ticket to Nepal and getting to basecamp. I’ve heard that keeping weight off after losing it is actually harder than losing it in the first place. And at many times in my own life things have become much more difficult after the initial steps. Here’s my point: Getting started is often a difficult part in every endeavor, but let’s not pretend that it’s peaches and cream the rest of the way. That being the case, how do you start and continue through an adventure to the end?
Make a commitment
Before beginning an adventure, the idea is there. A thought in your head is telling you to move in some direction that you’ve never been before, or to do it differently. Being adventurous means committing to make that thought happen. An idea can last for years and never be brought to fruition. Why? Maybe you don’t have time yet, maybe you’re still working on the details, maybe you’re afraid it won’t work out. But ultimately, if you don’t turn that idea into an adventure, it must just not be that important to you. And that’s okay—not all adventures are meant to be. Sometimes there are more important things. But you should always pursue the adventures you’re passionate about. Passions transform dreams into realities, so when you realize a passion, make a commitment. Learn everything you can about your idea, and tell people about it. Set a timeline, and turn your thoughts into concrete plans. Sometimes simply writing ideas down can help you bring them to life. Personally, I keep a running list of commitments: books to read, paintings to create, poems to write, places to see. All of these things are adventures to me and things that I’m passionate about, so I have actively decided to pursue them instead of just thinking about them and hoping they happen.
The Road Trip
When I first starting thinking about Anyone’s Adventure, I had no idea it could ever actually happen. A friend of mine half-jokingly suggested that we buy motorcycles and ride to the Pacific Ocean. We never did that but the idea of the adventure stuck. It was a year or so after that I decided to plan a big trip to see the country I live in. I asked a couple of friends to join in, and soon there were three of us just talking about where we wanted to go and how we would do it at a low cost. We set a general start date: summer 2016. Then we started telling all of our friends and family about it. Most people seemed either really excited for us or thought we were dreaming and that it would never happen. Either way, telling people made the trip more real to us. We would hangout and just spend a night talking about the trip and planning the exact places we would go; before long we had total costs estimated and campsites booked. I researched several of the parks and cities to figure out how to best use our time and to learn about the equipment we would need to bring with us. Things were moving along quickly and there was no stopping them at that point. Before we knew it the departure day was here. We woke up the morning of May 17, loaded up the truck, ate breakfast, and hit the road for Dallas.