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How To Become a Spontaneous Explorer of the World: The 7 Amusing Steps

How To Become a Spontaneous Explorer of the World: The 7 Amusing Steps

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    Ever since I was a little boy, I have always wanted to roam around and explore the world. It’s still fresh in my memory like it just happened yesterday. I was reading my social studies book and looking at the pictures of all nations of the world and the pertinent information about them. A thorough description of their culture, the products they produce, their form of government, their predominant religion, their history, what they are known for in the global community, and other interesting facts. Because of my childish curiosity, on impulse, I developed an extreme desire to explore the world. In an instant, I became a spontaneous explorer. Ahead are the 7 steps to become a spontaneous explorer of the work originally published by Maptia.

    Below is the wonderful post.

    Greetings future explorer of the world! In this post we will be introducing you to Spontaneity and his mischievous cousin Serendipity have faithfully accompanied many great explorers throughout the ages and we can guarantee that befriending these two on the road is bound to lead to unexpected wayward adventures and happy coincidences.

    “Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” — Lao Tzu

    * On an intriguing historical note, the word ‘serendipity’ was conceived entirely by accident. Back in 1754, the wonderfully named Mr. Horace Walpole recalled an old fairy tale of the ‘Three Persian Princes of Serendip’. According to Mr. Walpole ‘these brave Princes were always making discoveries, by accident and sagacity, of things which they were not in quest of…’

    Inspired by Guerrilla artist Keri Smith’s delightful book on ‘How To Be An Explorer of the World’ and also some of the wonderfully creative ideas listed in the Lonely Planet ‘Guide to Experimental Travel’, we have compiled a short, illustrated field guide with seven ideas that we hope will encourage you to succumb to your spontaneous urges, adopt a healthy caution against over-preparation, embrace serendipity, shed the heavy cloak of routine, chase down happenstance, and invite chance to be your chaperone as you follow in the of the three aforementioned Princes—Onward! ¡Vamos! Allons-y!

    spin-the-globe
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      1 | Spin the Globe

      Guidelines

      The timeless ‘spin the globe’ technique is one of the most well known methods for inducing spontaneous travel and is wonderfully demonstrated by James McAvoy playing Dr. Nicholas Garrigan in the 2006 film ‘The Last King of Scotland’. Committing to travel the first place your finger lands on takes a whole lot of ‘cojones’, so for first timers we would recommend giving yourself three strikes— spins if you will—before committing yourself to actually to the country that your finger lands on.

      For added panache, we would suggest first pouring a glass of single malt whisky and spinning one of the rather hand-painted globes from the talented team at Bellerby & Co based in London, England.

      Tweet step #1 ‘Spin the Globe’

      trust-in

        2 | Put your trust in a furry companion

        Guidelines

        If you live in an urban area, either take your own dog or ask to borrow one from a friend. If however you are living in central Asia, perhaps you might consider commandeering a yak. In Western Africa? Try a camel. In the Australian bush? Jump on a kangaroo… you get the picture. Whichever your mammalian companion of choice—turn the tables and let it take you for a walk, you never know where you might end up!

        Tweet #2 ‘Put Your Trust in a Furry Companion’

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        memory-lane

          3 | Flip a Coin and Take a Trip Down Memory Lane

          Guidelines

          This is one for the whole family and perhaps your elderly too. Politely ask them to dig around for an old coin (or equivalent out-dated coin depending on your homeland), perhaps a vintage travel guide (such as one) and if you really want to commit yourself, a vintage bicycle or Penny Farthing from an antique store—complete with a set of retro trouser clips.Once your intergenerational team has rounded itself up, set off down your local road at a moderate pace and at each junction take it in turns to flip your coin. Heads = go left. Tails = go right. Repeat this process for an afternoon and along the way ask each other about memories from each place or junction—what did these places look like 10 or even 20 years ago? What has changed and what has remained the same? Enjoy the leisurely ride down memory lane.

          Tweet step #3 ‘Flip a Coin and Take a Trip Down Memory Lane’

          embark-microadventure

            4 | Embark on a microadventure

            Guidelines

            Surely you’ve heard of Al Humphrey’s microadventures by now? His premise is simple—you do not need to fly to the other side of the planet to find wilderness and beauty—adventure is only a state of mind. Anyone can embark on a. Simply put the kettle on, pick up a map and find somewhere rural that you’ve never been to, despite it being close by.

            After work, jump on a train or cycle there. Sleep under the stars on a hilltop, swim in a river, wake up in the sunshine. Return to your desk, a few twigs in your hair but happy to the core.
            Tweet #4 ‘Embark on a Microadventure ’

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            seek-confluence

              5 | Seek points of confluence

              Guidelines

              A point of confluence occurs at the integer degree intersections where a line of latitude meets a line of longitude. There is a confluence within 49 miles (79 km) of you if you’re on the surface of and there are 64,442 latitude and longitude degree intersections in the world (counting each pole as one intersection). Check out confluence.org to find out how many fall in your country.These confluences are interesting because they represent the randomness that emerges from strict order, they are an open defiance of the order our culture imposes on us. As author Tim Vasquez says, ‘[Points of confluence are] curious places that embrace you in their history, character, and ecology, surrounded by people who are locals in every sense of the word.’

              Tweet step #5 ‘Seek Points of Confluence’

              up-and-away

                6 | Up Up and Away

                Guidelines

                This idea was pioneered by the legendary Larry Walters whose spontaneous misadventures inspired the Pixar classic UP. We do not advise that anyone actually attempts this at home, but Larry’s story is so spectacular that we felt obliged to include it in this compendium. Larry was an American truck driver, who on July 2, 1982 took flight in a homemade airship named ‘Inspiration I’His beautiful ‘flying machine’ consisted of an ordinary patio chair with 45 helium-filled weather balloons attached. It was reported that Inspiration I rose to an altitude of over 15 thousand feet and floated from its take-off spot in San Pedro, California into controlled airspace near Los Angeles International Airport. Slightly safer alternatives to Larry’s method would include or attaching a GPS to a helium balloon and following it with your feet placed firmly on the ground.
                Tweet #6 ‘Up Up and Away’

                lucid-dream

                  7 | Teach yourself to lucid dream

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                  Guidelines

                  Lucid dreaming is simply being conscious that you are dreaming. Tibetan Buddhists have dream yoga for centuries and there is a lot of literature behind the art and science of lucid dreaming—we found the simplest methods outlined in a post here on the 4HWW blog. It requires a lot of practise to master lucid dreaming in the beginning, but once greater control has been developed you can use your normal hours of REM sleep to visit anywhere in the world.

                  Quit your 9-5 job to fly over the Egyptian pyramids on the back of a giant eagle—check. Explore the depths of the ocean reefs without an oxygen tank—check. Base jump from Mt. Everest with Barack Obama—check. As with most things in life the only limits are those imposed by your own imagination—have fun!
                  Tweet #7 ‘Teach Yourself to Lucid Dream’

                  Now, what are you waiting for… get out there and start spontaneously exploring the world!

                  Did you find a place that you didn’t know you were looking for? Did you have interesting conversations which you otherwise weren’t expecting or did you have an experience worth telling your friends about when you returned home? If the answer to any of these questions is a resounding ‘Yes’—then your flirtation with spontaneity was a success. If no then what are you waiting for—don’t plan to be spontaneous tomorrow.

                  Share these ideas with a spontaneous tweet and @mention a friend who might be inspired by these seven serendipity-inducing ideas. Do you have any other ideas for spontaneous travel? If you have tried any of the above, please do share your story with us in the comments below.

                  This post originally appeared over on the Maptia Blog; the team at Maptia have just launched their beautiful platform for telling stories about places. The illustrations were done by Ella Frances Sanders, Illustrator in Residence at Maptia.

                  Seven Steps to Becoming a Spontaneous Explorer of the World |  By Maptia, Co-founder Team 

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                  Published on November 14, 2018

                  Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                  Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                  With our busy, always on lives, it seems that more and more of us are facing constant tiredness and fatigue on a regular basis.

                  For many people, they just take this in their stride as part of modern life, but for others the impact can be crippling and can have a serious effect on their sense of wellbeing, health and productivity.

                  In this article, I’ll share some of the most common causes of constant tiredness and fatigue and give you some guidance and action steps you can take to overcome some of the symptoms of fatigue.

                  Why Am I Feeling Fatigued?

                  Fatigue is extreme tiredness resulting from mental or physical exertion or illness.  It is a reduction in the efficiency of a muscle or organ after prolonged activity.[1]

                  It can affect anyone, and most adults will experience fatigue at some point in their life. 

                  For many people, fatigue is caused by a combination of lifestyle, social, psychological and general wellbeing issues rather than an underlying medical condition.

                  Although fatigue is sometimes described as tiredness, it is different to just feeling tired or sleepy. Everyone feels tired at some point, but this is usually resolved with a nap or a few nights of good sleep. Someone who is sleepy may also feel temporarily refreshed after exercising. If you are getting enough sleep, good nutrition and exercising regularly but still find it hard to perform, concentrate or be motivated at your normal levels, you may be experiencing a level of fatigue that needs further investigation. 

                  Symptoms of Fatigue

                  Fatigue can cause a vast range of physical, mental and emotional symptoms including:

                  • chronic tiredness, exhaustion or sleepiness
                  • mental blocks
                  • lack of motivation
                  • headache
                  • dizziness
                  • muscle weakness
                  • slowed reflexes and responses
                  • impaired decision-making and judgement
                  • moodiness, such as irritability
                  • impaired hand-to-eye coordination
                  • reduced immune system function
                  • blurry vision
                  • short-term memory problems
                  • poor concentration
                  • reduced ability to pay attention to the situation at hand

                  Causes of Fatigue

                  The wide range of causes that can trigger fatigue include:

                  • Medical causes: Constant exhaustion, tiredness and fatigue may be a sign of an underlying illness, such as a thyroid disorder, heart disease, anemia or diabetes.
                  • Lifestyle-related causes: Being overweight and a lack of regular exercise can lead to feelings of fatigue.  Lack of sleep and overcommitting can also create feelings of excessive tiredness and fatigue.
                  • Workplace-related causes: Workplace and financial stress in a variety of forms can lead to feelings of fatigue.
                  • Emotional concerns and stress: Fatigue is a common symptom of mental health problems, such as depression and grief, and may be accompanied by other signs and symptoms, including irritability and lack of motivation.

                  Fatigue can also be caused by a number of factors working in combination.

                  Medical Causes of Fatigue

                  If you have made lifestyle changes to increase your energy and still feel exhausted and fatigued, it may be time to seek guidance from your doctor.

                  Here are a few examples of illnesses that can cause ongoing fatigue. Seek medical advice if you suspect you have a health problem:

                  Anemia

                  Anemia is a condition in which you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to the body’s tissues. It is a common cause of fatigue in women.

                  Having anemia may make you feel tired and weak.

                  There are many forms of anemia, each with its own cause. Anemia can be temporary or long term, and it can range from mild to severe.[2]

                  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

                  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a condition that can cause persistent, unexplained fatigue that interferes with daily activities for more than six months.

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                  This is a chronic condition with no one-size-fits-all treatment, but lifestyle changes can often help ease some symptoms of fatigue.[3]

                  Diabetes

                  Diabetes can cause fatigue with either high or low blood sugars. When your sugars are high, they remain in the bloodstream instead of being used for energy, which makes you feel fatigued. Low blood sugar (glucose) means you may not have enough fuel for energy, also causing fatigue.[4]

                  Sleep Apnea

                  Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder where sufferers briefly stop breathing for short periods during sleep. Most people are not aware this is happening, but it can cause loud snoring, and daytime fatigue.

                  Being overweight, smoking, and drinking alcohol can all worsen the symptoms of sleep apnea.[5]

                  Thyroid disease

                  An underactive thyroid gland means you have too little thyroid hormone (thyroxine) in your body. This makes you feel tired and you could also put on weight and have aching muscles and dry skin.[6]

                  Common lifestyle factors that can cause fatigue include:

                  • Lack of sleep
                  • Too much sleep 
                  • Alcohol and drugs 
                  • Sleep disturbances 
                  • Lack of regular exercise and sedentary behaviour 
                  • Poor diet 

                  Common workplace issues that can cause fatigue include:

                  • Shift work: Our body is designed to sleep during the night. A shift worker may confuse their circadian clock by working when their body is programmed to be asleep.
                  • Poor workplace practices: This may include long work hours, hard physical labour, irregular working hours (such as rotating shifts), a stressful work environment, boredom or working alone. 
                  • Workplace stress – This can be caused by a wide range of factors including job dissatisfaction, heavy workload, conflicts with bosses or colleagues, bullying, or threats to job security.
                  • Burnout: This could be striving too hard on one area of your life while neglecting others, which leads to a life that feels out of balance.

                  Psychological Causes of Fatigue

                  Psychological factors are present in many cases of extreme tiredness and fatigue.  These may include:

                  • Depression: Depression is characterised by severe and prolonged feelings of sadness, dejection and hopelessness. People who are depressed commonly experience chronic fatigue.
                  • Anxiety and stress: Someone who is constantly anxious or stressed keeps their body in overdrive. The constant flooding of adrenaline exhausts the body, and fatigue sets in.
                  • Grief: Losing a loved one causes a wide range of emotions including shock, guilt, depression, despair and loneliness.

                  How to Tackle Constant Fatigue

                  Here are 12 ways you can start tackling the causes of fatigue and start feeling more energetic.

                  1. Tell The Truth

                  Some people can numb themselves to the fact that they are overtired or fatigued all the time. In the long run, this won’t help you.

                  To give you the best chance to overcome or eliminate fatigue, you must diagnose and tell the truth about the things that are draining your energy, making you tired or causing constant fatigue.

                  Once you’re honest with yourself about the activities you’re doing in your life that you find irritating, energy-draining, and make you tired on a regular basis you can make a commitment to stop doing them.

                  The help that you need to overcome fatigue is available to you, but not until you tell the truth about it. The first person you have to sell on getting rid of the causes of fatigue is yourself.

                  One starting point is to diagnose the symptoms. When you start feeling stressed, overtired or just not operating at your normal energy levels make a note of:

                  • How you feel
                  • What time of day it is
                  • What may have contributed to your fatigue
                  • How your mind and body reacts

                  This analysis may help you identify, understand and then eliminate very specific causes.

                  2. Reduce Your Commitments

                  When we have too many things on our plate personally and professionally, we can feel overstretched, causing physical and mental fatigue.

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                  If you have committed to things you really don’t want to do, this causes irritability and low emotional engagement. Stack these up throughout your day and week, then your stress levels will rise.

                  When these commitments have deadlines associated with them, you may be trying to cram in far too much in a short period of time.  This creates more stress and can affect your decision making ability.

                  Start being realistic about how much you can get done. Either reduce the commitments you have or give yourself more time to complete them in.

                  3. Get Clear On Your Priorities

                  If working on your list of to-do’s or goals becomes too overwhelming, start reducing and prioritizing the things that matter most.

                  Start with prioritizing just 3 things every day. When you complete those 3 things, you’ll get a rush of energy and your confidence will grow.

                  If you’re trying to juggle too many things and are multi-tasking, your energy levels will drop and you’ll struggle to maintain focus.

                  Unfinished projects can make you self-critical and feel guilty which drops energy levels further, creating inaction.

                  Make a list of your 3 MIT (Most Important Tasks) for the next day before you go to bed. This will stop you overcommitting and get you excited about what the next day can bring.

                  4. Express More Gratitude

                  Gratitude and confidence are heavily linked. Just being thankful for what you have and what you’ve achieved increases confidence and makes you feel more optimistic.

                  It can help you improve your sense of wellbeing, which can bring on feelings of joy and enthusiasm.

                  Try starting a gratitude journal or just note down 3 things you’re grateful for every day.

                  5. Focus On Yourself

                  Exhaustion and fatigue can arrive by focusing solely on other people’s needs all the time, rather than worrying about and focusing on what you need (and want).

                  There are work commitments, family commitments, social commitments. You may start with the best intentions, to put in your best performance at work, to be an amazing parent and friend, to simply help others.

                  But sometimes, we extend ourselves too much and go beyond our personal limits to help others. That’s when constant exhaustion can creep up on us.  Which can make us more fatigued.

                  We all want to help and do our best for others, but there needs to be some balance. We also need to take some time out just for ourselves to recharge and rejuvenate.

                  6. Set Aside Rest and Recovery Time

                  Whether it’s a couple of hours, a day off, a mini-break or a proper holiday, time off is essential to help us recover, recharge and refocus.

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                  Recovery time helps fend off mental fatigue and allows us to simply kick back and relax.

                  The key here, though, is to remove ourselves from the daily challenges that bring on tiredness and fatigue. Here’s how.

                  Can you free yourself up completely from work and personal obligations to just rest and recover?

                  7. Take a Power Nap

                  When you’re feeling tired or fatigued and you have the ability to take a quick 20-minute nap, it could make a big difference to your performance for the rest of the day.

                  Napping can improve learning, memory and boost your energy levels quickly.

                  This article on the benefit of napping is a useful place to start if you want to learn more: How a 20-Minute Nap at Work Makes You Awake and Productive the Whole Day

                  8. Take More Exercise

                  The simple act of introducing some form of physical activity into your day can make a huge difference. It can boost energy levels, make you feel much better about yourself and can help you avoid fatigue.

                  Find something that fits into your life, be that walking, going to the gym, running or swimming. 

                  The key is to ensure the exercise is regular and that you are emotionally engaged and committed to stick with it.

                  You could also walk more which will help clear your head and shift your focus away from stressful thoughts.

                  9. Get More Quality Sleep

                  To avoid tiredness, exhaustion and fatigue, getting enough quality sleep matters. 

                  Your body needs sleep to recharge.  Getting the right amount of sleep every night can improve your health, reduce stress levels and help us improve our memory and learning skills.

                  My previous article on The Benefits of Sleep You Need to Know will give you some action steps to start improving your sleep. 

                  10. Improve Your Diet

                  Heavy or fatty meals can make you feel sluggish and tired, whilst some foods or eating strategies do just the opposite.

                  Our always on lives have us reaching for sweets or other sugary snacks to give us a burst of energy to keep going. Unfortunately, that boost fades quickly which can leave you feeling depleted and wanting more.

                  On the other hand, whole grains and healthy unsaturated fats supply the reserves you can draw on throughout the day.

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                  To keep energy up and steady, it’s a good idea to limit refined sugar and starches.

                  Eating small meals and healthy snacks every few hours throughout the day provides a steady supply of nutrients to body and brain. It’s also important not to skip breakfast.

                  Eating a balanced diet helps keep your blood sugar in a normal range and prevents that sluggish feeling when your blood sugar drops.

                  11. Manage Your Stress Levels

                  Stress is one of the leading causes of exhaustion and fatigue, and can seriously affect your health.

                  When you have increased levels of stress at work and at home, it’s easy to feel exhausted all the time. 

                  Identifying the causes of stress and then tackling the problems should be a priority. 

                  My article on How to Help Anxiety When Life is Stressing You Out shares 16 strategies you can use to overcome stress.

                  12. Get Hydrated

                  Sometimes we can be so busy that we forget to keep ourselves fully hydrated.

                  Water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight and is essential in maintaining our body’s basic functions.

                  If we don’t have enough water, it can adversely affect our mental and physical performance, which leads to tiredness and fatigue.

                  The recommended daily amount is around two litres a day, so to stay well hydrated keep a water bottle with you as much as possible.

                  The Bottom Line

                  These 12 tips can help you reduce your tiredness and feeling of fatigue.  Some will work better than others as we are all different, whilst others can be incorporated together in your daily life.

                  If you’ve tried to make positive changes to reduce fatigue and you still feel tired and exhausted, it may be time to consider making an appointment with your doctor to discuss your condition.

                  Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via unsplash.com

                  Reference

                  [1]Oxford English Dictionary: Definition of fatigue
                  [2]NHS Choices: 10 Reasons for feeling tired
                  [3]Verywellhealth: What is chronic fatigue syndrome
                  [4]Everyday Health: Why does type 2 diabetes make you feel tired
                  [5]Mayo Clinic: Sleep apnea
                  [6]Harvard Health: The lowdown on thyroid slowdown

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