I’ve been seeing a few 2013 “year in a jar” projects around the interknots. It’s a super cool idea. Here’s how it works: You get a jar. You get pieces of paper. You proceed to write down things about your year as they happen (milestones, quotes, et cetra). You place these things in the jar. You read them at the end of the year…and hopefully, feel awesome about what you’ve done.
That’s the plan, anyways.
And so I made one. My friend Laura made one, too, since we were having a catch up night near the end of 2012. We were armed with $2.00 jars from Wal-Mart, ribbon, sparkles, leftover craft supplies, and letter stickers.
Ah, letter stickers. What have you done to me?
Short on inspiration (or maybe high on it, in a way) I messily spelled out the words 2013: HAVE AN ADVENTURE EVERYDAY. I stared at the word Adventure for a while. This was mostly because I was tired, but also because I like that word. I like it a lot.
And here is the part of the post where I declare my word for the year ahead to be “Adventure.”
(I even have a fancy Adventure jar, so you know it’s legit.)
This, of course, makes HAVE AN ADVENTURE EVERYDAY more than just some adorable words on an adorable jar. This is a full-out goal; A messy, beautiful, terrifying, inspiring goal (<<adjective overload, my flowery friends).
My jar, I have decided, will hold Adventures. Not quotes, not cuteness. This is purely business. The jar will be reserved for daily proof that I try new things, face fears, make friends, laugh hard, and love harder. Because in the end, my goal is to wake up each morning, look the world in the eye, and say “What, Life? Yeah, I’d tap that.”
The way I see it, there are two necessary steps to fulfilling the HAVE AN ADVENTURE EVERYDAY goal:
1) Do more Adventure.
2) See stuff as Adventure.
The first one seems obvious. Adventure involves a steady process of keeping your hands feeling dirty and your soul feeling clean. But it would be a mistake to underestimate the power of mindset. Yeah, skydiving is an adventure. But so is reading an amazing new book. So is eating alone in a restaurant (It’s easy for some people. It terrifies the rest of us). So is the epic quest for strength, grace and dignity in the face of disappointment—or even putting oneself in a position where disappointment can go down.
The way I see it (subject to change…as always, I am as fallible as it gets), every day has the potential to hold a badass story or two. Sometimes, adventures are right there, photobombing our lives. Other times, we have to get off our butts and say “Yes” often enough to create them. If I want to HAVE AN ADVENTURE EVERYDAY, I need to be active: move to DC, get out of the comfort zone, dance in the grocery store (in that order, probably). But at the same time, I need to be calm enough to notice the adventures that find me.
That won’t always be easy. Actually, it’s supposed to be messy/beautiful/terrifying/inspiring, which really means that it can’t be easy. But In the end, I will hopefully have a jar stuffed with memories and a life stuffed with stories. That qualifies as “worth it.”
January 2, 2013
Dear self this year,
Find adventure. Let adventure find you. And please, write it down when it does.
A terrified little girl (aspiring to be: a terrified little girl doing cool stuff.)