Kilimanjaro · Living in Alaska

2018: The Year of Adventure

Every year for the past few years I’ve been choosing one word in January that I live by throughout the entire year.  I find myself constantly referring back to that word as I have to make decisions and come up with plans.  In 2015, my word was “Embrace“.  I chose it because it was my first full year in Alaska and I wanted to try all the things and totally throw myself into become an outdoorsy person (and specifically a winter outdoorsy person).  Looking back on that first year, I’d have to say that I did a really good job at this!  Being an Alaskan newbie was tough but this word helped motivate me to try new things and embrace the cold, dark craziness of Alaska.

This feels like an entire lifetime ago!

In 2016, my word was “Confidence” because I thought I would need some confidence to run the Philadelphia Marathon in the fall.  It turned out that I would need to use that confidence to cope with my running injury, learn how to swim, participate in my first triathlon, and get through some really tough times at work.  At the end of the year when I looked back on how I’d used this word throughout the year I just had to laugh at how perfect this choice was!

In 2017, my word was “Courage“.  Just typing that out makes me a bit emotional.  If you read my 2017 recap you’ll see why.  This past year has been filled completely with all sorts of scary and incredible adventures that I had to use a lot of courage to survive and succeed at.  And the biggest one of all was choosing to sign up for a Kilimanjaro hike in 2018.  When I was in the middle of deciding if I should do it or not, I remembered what my word of the year was.  And I decided to book the trip.

So for 2018, I feel like I’ve got to pick a good one.  Which is why I spent the last month or so really thinking about what I was out of this year and how I want to guide the next 365 or so days of my life.  My husband, friends, and coworkers all weighed in.  And this word came up over and over again:


My one word for 2017 is “Adventure”.  According to the dictionary, Adventure means:

1. An exciting or very unusual experience.
2. Participation in exciting undertakings or enterprises.
3. A bold, usually risky undertaking; hazardous action of uncertain outcome.

Now, I know what you’re thinking.  That’s such a predictable word for someone who thrives on and really enjoys adventures.  And that’s actually why I chose it.  See, in my day-to-day life I actually deal with a lot of anxiety, Seasonal Affective Disorder, and boredom when I can’t get outside to do something epic and fun.  I struggle through the boring and blah times and can get grumpy and upset when I don’t have some big fun thing planned all the time.  And most of the aspects of my adventures are closely controlled by me so that I’m getting a lot of fun out of it.  So when my coworker/super close friend suggested that I try to use this word to find the adventure in boring everyday moments or stressful, uncomfortable, or unusual situations I thought it was a really good idea.  I feel like not everything can be an adventure – but maybe it can if I just take the time to appreciate the magic in the slower days, the stressful times, and the new but scary opportunities.

Also, let’s get real:  my solo multi-flight trip to Tanzania where I’ll be summiting the tallest freestanding mountain on earth with a group of strangers who are as crazy as I am (and where I don’t know the language, food, or how my body will react at 19,341 feet above sea level) will be the biggest adventure I’ve ever taken.  And training for it will be full of crazy adventures too.  So bring on the adventures, 2018!

Are you picking one word to live by in 2018?  Let me know what word you’re picking this year!

21 thoughts on “2018: The Year of Adventure

  1. I can totally relate to getting grumpy when there isn’t an adventure (or 5) planned. My word for this year is “Forward”, it fits well with the goals I have set to accomplish this year.

    1. I’m glad I’m not the only one! My husband thinks I’m crazy but I’m just bored when I don’t have anything fun to look forward to. That’s why I like camping and backpacking out to cabins all year long – I can plan mini adventures every few weeks without using up any vacation time!

      1. I love how Alaska has cabins to backpack out to! That would be so much fun. I’ve been trying to get more creative with my weekends and figuring out ways to adventure and not use vacation time.

  2. “I struggle through the boring and blah times and can get grumpy and upset when I don’t have some big fun thing planned all the time.”

    This is me 85% percent of the time!!!! I get anxiety when more than a weekend goes by without a big hike or climbing trip. Glad I’m not the only one who feel this way. Yes to finding adventure in the everyday, I really like that. If all else fails I’ll just scroll though my IG profile, it at least makes it look like my life is 100% adventure all the time 🙂 lol. My word is Create! More writing, trying to get published, and um…make a baby…eek!!!!

    1. Oh my god are we solemates?! I’m so happy that I’m not the only one out here who feels like this! And I’ve actually said that about my own instagram feed too! (running off to make sure I’m following you and your adventures on insta). I love your words and your goals for 2018! That is so exciting!

  3. I love this! I totally can relate to feeling grumpy when I don’t have an adventure planned. I actually was just thinking about a word for the year, and thought about Embrace, so it’s really cool to see that was one of your past words.

    1. I’m glad I’m not the only one! And yeah that was a great word. It was like the adult version of “yolo” – oh yes we should do that, we’re embracing our life up here in Alaska! 🙂

  4. Picking a word is such a great idea! I might have to steal it!! Good luck on the hike, that will be truly amazing, good luck can’t wait to read about it!

  5. If I were to choose a word for this year, I think it would be “Patience.” I get discouraged pretty quickly when I don’t see the results I want. I still work hard, but it’s an emotional battle. I just want to be able to recognize that I’m in a really good spot where I’m at and know that I’m going to keep growing.

  6. Great choice! Bring it on! What a tremendous goal you have for this year… and what an adventure to train for!

    I quite like the idea of finding the adventure in the every day, too. For it’s that adventure, and that spirit of determined persistence, that lets the other adventures, the really big ones, happen. The training can be dull… but the rewards… for me the biggest one so far has been getting up Dead Woman Pass in Peru… have been and ARE so worth it!

    I’m a firm believer in living in the contrasts. Those boring, dull days you speak of make the big adventures that much more spectacular! Imagine getting bored with a life of adventure after adventure. It could happen if it became your normal.

    Have a tremendous, delightfully adventurous, year! I’ll be excited to watch it unfold from down south. 😉

    1. I agree! The boring days can be rough but they make the real adventures worth it. It’s just hard to deal with them sometimes due to my Seasonal Affective Disorder, but this year I’m trying to embrace it more!

  7. You are incredible! I love your blog and cannot wait to read more. I am now fully obsessed… just thought you should know. Thank you for sharing all of this. 🙂

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