We can see it on TV, in real life, commercials etc… Media have influenced us to think that owning more means more happiness. We measure our happiness by number of zeros in our bank accounts or the type of car we drive or which phone we own. Is it really like that? Don’t get me wrong, having more money will surely make your life easier, but do you really have to reach that superstar level to consider yourself happy?
Jim Carey once said: “I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer”. Jim Carey is a smart man. He would not be where he is now if he wasn’t, so lets just trust him on that.
“No, no! The adventures first, explanations take such a dreadful time.”
Is it material stuff or experience that make you happy?
We live in a society where material things are valued more because we can touch them instead of experience that you can not touch but, oh boy, you can feel. We idolize people we have never met wanting to be like them, doing what they do, owning what they own. Are we defining ourselves that way or just copying somebody else and living somebody else’s life?
So what defines us and what can make us happy? Experiences! Experience is something that will define you in your own way. Not everybody reacts the same to different types of experiences. You might go sky diving and it could be really fun for you, but somebody else might shit their pants after jumping out of the plane 3000 meters above the ground with the bunch of ropes and big piece of cloth strapped to their back. You will get to know yourself better by experiencing various amazing adventures, seeing your reaction in different types of situations and your change after it.
“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.”
What hurts more? Failing at something or breaking a material thing you own?
Let’s say you buy a next gen phone which is really fast, you can play games on it, surf the web and what not… But after some time that phone becomes just another thing… You are not getting excited over it, you get used to it, you are probably even thinking of buying a better one. If you break your phone you will feel really bad about it. But then again, there is experience… Let’s say you try to go surfin’… And of course, as you try something for a few times you’ll fail, you will probably fail miserably. At some point waves may get bigger and bigger and when you fall you will probably feel like you are in a washing machine thinking “my leg should not be pointing that way”. So you haven’t been able to surf like some people do and you have fallen a dozen times, so you have failed at surfing. But the thing is, it was fun, it was exciting and it was new, even the fact that you have failed. So let’s say 3-4 months passed and you remember you tried surfing (and failed) and how you broke your phone… Which one will bring a smile to your face?
Yeah, I thought so.
Life is a blank canvas, and you need to throw all the paint on it you can.
Experiences are with us for the whole life!
Do you remember your Christmas gift from 3 years ago? I don’t. Maybe I did not even get one, it doesn’t matter… Do you remember where you went on vacation 3 years ago? I remember clearly I went to Greece to Zakynthos island and it was awesome, I met awesome people I had so much fun that I can not describe – those stuff just stick with you.
What other experiences did I have?
So now I’m gonna brag about what I have done by now… I have 7 ultra mountain marathons behind me on a mountain just outside the city I live in, I have cycled from Wien back to Serbia on a Danube cycle route, I have climbed top of Bali, I actively dive, I went through caves of Vietnam; I try to visit as many places as possible in my country, I go out and photograph my hometown, hike on the local mountain and would not change those experiences for the newest BMW!
So, how to get more fun and more experience?
1. Be brave, take risks
I’m not saying you should do the most unthinkable stuff ever… Just try to say yes more to the things happening around you. The most amazing stuff happens when you least expect it. Once I fell from my motorbike and broke the ignition switch in the middle of a mountain. I could not get it to start… I pushed the motorbike to the road and a driver stopped and helped me start the motorbike by pulling me with his car. I did not even wave at him he just stopped and helped. He was a very nice person and it makes you feel more better knowing that when the shit goes down a stranger will help you!
2. Make it happen – today!
So you probably ran into this article on Twitter, Facebook or Google and when you are finished with it, you will go back to scrolling those infinite pages. Well, I dare you not to do that. Give yourself a challenge, go ice skating, mountain biking or anything else. I guarantee you will have fun!
3. Shift your budget priorities
Are you saving for a nice new leather couch for your living room? Why don’t you go and visit Vietnam instead? Too expensive? Visit something closer. You will get used to that couch it will become nothing special just like the old one you are preparing to throw away. A road trip will stick in your head forever. Remembering the adventures will bring a smile to your face and it will make you wanna have more trips like these.
4. Start small and cheap
Starting with big things in any part of the life is a bad idea. Why don’t you first go check out your local mountain for a hike before attempting something bigger? You like it? Great, take it to the next level, who knows in the end you might conquer the Everest!
There are also other things to do like going to the movies, learning more about the monuments in your town, meeting new people…Is there a great view of your town that everybody has visited but you have not? Go there, now! Have you ever planned going camping but never went? Well, there is your answer. How long has it been since you have visited a museum, a theatre or an exibition?
Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.
~George Bernard Shaw
I’m gonna leave you with this: “Rich life equals experienced life”! Or we can say “Rich life equals life with no regrets“.
We are all gonna die one day that is the reality. I just hope you will have a rich life – and I hope that this article changed your definition of “rich”.