Tuesday, February 16, 2010

On Being a(n Adventurous) Lady

note: I've started to invite some of my readers to contribute their thoughts, stories, creations, and inspiration to my daily posts.

And so, without further adieu, please welcome kerri...

"Women are creatures of habit. We create routines and schedules and pride ourselves in our ability to keep them. I’m not sure if this is a quality of a lady, though. Spontaneity is more apt for a lady; she is always seeking to meet new people, try new things and to improve herself constantly. Habit does not encourage these things. But adventure always does.
"Take, for instance, Lizzie Bennett from Austen's Pride and Prejudice. She never settled. She constantly did uncomfortable things, in pursuit of something more. Be it a long holiday in the country or a visit to people far “above” her station, Lizzie didn’t hesitate to test her boundaries or put limits on sharing her opinion and being herself. I would call her adventurous, to say the least.
"I, however, am not adventurous. While I love challenges, I don’t often find myself seeking them out. When I do, the rewards are greater than I ever imagined. But I constantly hold back. And I’m not alone. Why? Because where we seek adventure or a challenge, we understand failure as a potential outcome. Fear of failure clouds other possibilities, like success or happiness or confidence.
"Enter snowshoeing. It was something I had never done, nor had my friend Amy. We made a plan, last minute enough to not be able to change our minds. I’m not sure about Amy, but I knew if I had too much time to think about it, I’d come up with any number of excuses to not go. But we went. It was hard starting out (I fell at the very beginning of the trail – why should I have actually paid attention to how to keep those things attached to my feet?); I was positive that by the first stop on the trail I’d be ready to turn around.
"Breathing hard (but trying to hide it from Amy, as she was trying to do the same), I made myself find a rhythm. About 20 minutes in, it just clicked. My blood was pumping, my lungs were filling with clear air, (my armpits may have been sweating profusely), and I felt awesome. "Natural high" became a phrase I understood. Amy and I made the whole hike, wind and all, and got to see beautiful vistas that made the sweat and burning lungs worth it.
"I’m a blog-lover but I’ve never been a blogger, probably because I see it the same way as I saw snowshoeing. So when Stephanie asked me to be a guest writer, I was intimidated (I’m sweating as I write this – could this be a theme?). I have visions of people scoffing at what I think are compelling ideas and NOT laughing at my jokes (pulse check). Oh gosh! But I know I’m not alone; I know you share similar fears to mine.

So here’s to Lizzie Bennett!
And here’s to you--and me--trying new adventures.

It's what ladies do.

Interested in being a guest writer? Email me at shillberry@stephaniehillerry.com for details!

photos courtesy of kerri, taken on her snowshoeing trip.


  1. I was just reading today about how fear so often holds us back, and how important it is to take risks. I've been putting my heart out there for the world to see for two years now, and most of those days have involved the implied rejection of silence. BUT! if I hadn't risked it, I wouldn't have made all of the new friends I have now....

    I'm always learning that the things that are scary are usually the most rewarding (except, of course, for scary, creepy, sketchy guys--we should all probably follow our instincts and Stay Away from them!)

    Great post, Kerri!

  2. True, true! I've found that one of the ways to beat fear is to act anything but petrified. Instead? Focus. Focus on breathing (snowshoeing), on what you want to say (public speaking), on what your feet and body should be doing (my recent adventure: snowboarding)and ignore the racing pulse, chuckles from others, and snow in one's face and pants.
    If nothing else, adventure gets you a great story...and usually a more rewarding life.
    Cheers, Kerri! To focusing. :)

  3. Kerri! Great job! How fun to see you and Amy on Steph's blog! Now I only wish I was on that snow shoeing trip with you. I have never been, but would like to go....the fear has kept me behind. Now you guys will be the pros! See you in a few hours....

  4. I've never seen myself as someone held back by fear. But after a few recent failures in my life, I am afraid to take the next step and jump into my new phase in life. Thank you Kerri for showing me that I can stare fear in the eyes (sweaty armpits and all) and defeat it!!
    Hope to see you again on the blog!!!!

  5. Thanks for the comments! It means a lot to me to hear that other people relate to my fears. Now that I've conquered a big one of mine - what are you going to do to conquer yours?

  6. Kerri...I loved your blog. You did a great job and it is amazing how alot of us ladies feel excatly how you felt when you do something new and out of our comfort zone! Just for the record your jokes made me laugh...truely! I am proud of you and you should be proud of yourself too. Great job and can't wait to hear more. See you soon!


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