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Adventure Can Be Scary, and That's a Good Thing

Eleanor Roosevelt once wisely advised, “Do one thing every day that scares you.” So I do.

By: Emily White + Save to a List

I’ve continuously struggled with anxiety and the relentless pressure to please everyone all the time. These feelings have caused me to be fearful of social outings, get stressed easily about seemingly mundane things, and consistently doubt my abilities and confidence.

Anxiety, and the fear it causes, can reduce your effectiveness in the world. It can leave a lasting impact on your psyche and how you view yourself and others. I want to be the most effective person I can be, and experience all that I can, despite any fears that may want to hold me back. It’s easy to just say, “Well, those things scare me, so I’m just not even going to try.” But what if you do try?

I’ve begun to find that challenging myself to face fear head-on helps to overcome some of those anxious feelings. Climbing rocks scares me, but it also helps focus my anxiety on one, tangible task. When I put trust in my abilities and reach the summit, it leaves me with a soar of confidence that flows into other aspects of my life. I’ve never regretted trying to climb any rock. Even when I yelled in frustration, cried in fear, and clung on for dear life before letting go and falling- I’ve never looked back and said,”I wish I didn’t even attempt to climb it.” In the end, after the initial frustration of “failing” subsides, I’m always proud of myself for trying.

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.” ― Eleanor Roosevelt

I am bad about trying new things without the encouragement of others. One of the many reasons that I’m very grateful to have my boyfriend Mike as my travel companion and partner in life is that he pushes me to challenge myself, and he constantly introduces me to new activities that I never would have tried on my own. I’ve come to realize that encouragement is something I crave, and he is the best encourager I’ve ever met. Even when I’m ready to give up, he is always there with a positive attitude, and his belief in me translates into a greater belief in myself and my abilities.

Living full time in a camper traveling the country has continuously challenged my fear of the unknown and unplanned. I wake up every morning not knowing what  mountains I might conquer, what rivers I might paddle, or what views I  may fall asleep to. There are times I am afraid, anxious,  frustrated, dirty, smelly, hungry- but as Eleanor once said:

“A woman is like a tea bag; you never know how strong it is until it’s in hot water.” ― Eleanor Roosevelt

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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