What I learned by challenging myself and moving out of my comfort zone
There is no doubt that most of us are completely outside our comfort zone and feel challenged and tested by the current state of the world. But I would like to suggest that it is completely different to CHOOSE your own challenge. We are being shown that nothing is stable, safe, or predictable no matter how hard we try to make it that way.
The more I conquer the challenges I make for myself, the easier it is to face external challenges. By learning to embrace the uncomfortable and unpredictable, we find ourselves more deeply along with little gems and pieces of magic. I could suggest that we all have a challenge(s) waiting inside of us— that little thing we want to do but down’t allow ourselves because the little voice in our head says “not now” or “who do you think you are to believe you can do that?”
1. It is more important to pursue my own goals and wishes than live a life pleasing others.
Is there something that you really want to do, but don’t because you believe that friends or family do not support you, judge you, or you are afraid that you will let them down?
This is a tough one. I always believed that I lived outside the box of the opinion of others.
Walking Through the Night (The Entire Night) With Two 13-year Old Boys—They Are My New Heroes!! Our Boys Can Do So Much More Than We Give Them Credit For
We knew we were headed in the right direction. We had a map and a compass. We knew there was no chance to get too lost. We knew this area so well. But we kept doubting ourselves.
It was nearly midnight as we ascended up the hill to reach the plateau. We had already been walking for five hours—Wexler (my son), JP (his friend), and me. At this point, it was unclear if we were on the correct path. We had walked this stretch several times before. But it felt different. The final water crossing, the one we expected would be up to our waist, was much tamer. Although the water was running at a fierce pace, we were able to scurry across the boulders in the flooded creek on all fours, without really walking through the rapid current. This was so much different from last year. Last year, we literally raised our bags above our heads as we waded through the waist deep water, careful not to step on any rocks or trip on any submerged boulders which would cause us to fall into the freezing water.
On January 7, 2020, I was going about 60 km down a hill in a remote part of Australia when I got the speed wobbles (also called a death wobble) where the bicycle starts to violently shake back and forth. That is about all I remember because after that I lost consciousness. Apparently, I flew over my bicycle on my head (yes, I was wearing a helmet) and slid on my face breaking my four front teeth. My partner was ahead of me. He said I started screaming as I was flying. He turned around to watch me sliding. I do not remember anything until about half an hour later when four strangers were standing over me. I was air lifted to the hospital.
In August 2019, I was interviewed by, in my opinion, one of the best podcasters out there; Sarah Williams of the Tough Girl Podcast.
I am a 49 year old gypsy cyclist. I am cycling around the world absorbing what I can from the experience of traveling through countries that are so foreign to what I know. While I am limited by language—meaning that I do not speak local languages—I learn so much just by taking the journey.
It is four hundred miles down the coast of Oregon from the very north to the border of California—a combination of dramatic beauty with a harsh and grueling environment with sweeping winds in an extremely remote landscape. Who would want to spend time in this testing environment?
It is the middle of the night. I am in the tent at a campground on the Oregon Coast. It is cold and I do not want to get up. But I have to pee. I open the zipper of the tent. There is a flap from the outer cover where it is possible to keep our backpacks while we sleep. Our backpacks are gone.
We take a bus from Portland, Oregon to Warrenton and start walking. It is a dark day and it beings to rain. After about 6 miles, we stick out our thumb and a nice gentleman gives us a ride to the campground. People are incredibly friendly here.
Perhaps the greatest thrill of being alive for me is the element of surprise.
I did not always know this.
I am five weeks into a six week adventure through Mexico before I return to my bicycle in Malaysia to continue a worldwide bicycle tour.