At AdventurUs Women, we know that every woman has the strength and resilience to take risks, challenge herself, and accomplish her goals. But taking that first step to get out of your comfort zone can be daunting. Here are some tips on how to set aside your fears and become an adventurous woman.
DREAM BIG… BUT HAVE ATTAINABLE GOALS.
Maybe you just watched Free Solo and now you can’t stop thinking about climbing El Cap in Yosemite. If you have no experience rock-climbing, this idea may feel like a fleeting daydream. But if you harness your imagination and let it drive you to join a climbing gym, you’re one baby step closer to scaling that wall.
But what if I’m afraid to even join the climbing gym?
I’ve been there. As a fat woman in the outdoors, trying new activities is scary, especially in a sport like rock climbing where fat women lack so much representation.
So, find the representation! Surround yourself with images and media of women like you doing the things you aspire to do. When I feel discouraged, I always scroll through Fat Girls Hiking and immediately assure myself that I can do whatever I put my mind to, even if I have to modify it.
HAVE A SUPPORT NETWORK.
I am a huge fan of solo hiking. I can go at my own pace, sweat without shame, and don’t have to share my salt and vinegar chips. But I never set foot on a trail without telling someone where I’m going, sending them a map of my route, and letting them know when I should be done.
Support also means having cheerleaders who motivate us to keep adventuring. Find your kin—your loved ones, friends, and even strangers who want to support you and share your joy. Try joining us on an AdventurUs Women Escape to start find your people. There are also plenty of ways to connect with other adventurous women on social media. Join the AdventurUs Women Facebook group to get started!
Learning how to kayak on the AdventurUs Women 2019 Escape to Bend, OR.
HAVE FAITH IN YOURSELF.
You are stronger and more resilient than you think. Our comfort zones are also complacency zones where growth is limited. We have to push our limits to know how far our limits really go. Celebrate discomfort and use it as fuel to keep getting out there.
LISTEN TO YOUR BODY.
Respect what your body tells you. There is a difference between discomfort and unnecessary risk. If you feel anxious about a certain river crossing, give that anxiety the space it deserves. Suppressing our intuition can often lead to unsafe situations. Where is the anxiety coming from? What risks can you assess to think about the situation more rationally? What are your options?
You know yourself best and your best is good enough. Turning around is not failure–just getting out there is a win! Don’t punish or push yourself too hard. An adventurous woman assesses risk factors and knows that her success is not determined by anyone but herself.
ACCEPT THAT YOU WILL NEVER BE FULLY PREPARED—AT SOME POINT, YOU JUST HAVE TO GET OUT THERE.
Scary, we know. But there is no absolute level of preparation to reach when you’re planning to get into the outdoors. You can print out a million maps and still make a wrong turn. But we take our mistakes in stride and let them guide us on our journey to becoming an adventurous woman.