Ah the joys of the corporate world. You wake up every morning at an ungodly hour, you dress in extremely uncomfortable clothes- not to mention high heels made by the devil that just look too damn good with that skirt to ignore – and you hit the road. Breakfast? What is that? If you’re lucky you can grab an apple on the way down or even more fun is starving until 12pm when you then enter a competition with yourself for the fastest way to consume the most amount of junk. And you win every time – score. The day drags on and you resist the urge to repeatedly bang your head against your laptop, or create a noose out of the endless paperwork you have to go through. Then you go home to bum in front of the TV and sleep.Wake up.
It’s dangerous, it’s life threatening and it’s the life that many people are leading today as they hum and drum their way up the corporate ladder.
What if I told you that life-threatening and dangerous can actually mean a good thing and that the adventure we embark on everyday to just get ourselves out of bed can actually be replaced with a real adventure – something truly life changing and quite easily attainable.
For most people when they hear ‘adventure’ they imagine being chased down by lions, tigers or bears, or sleeping in the great outdoors and being eaten alive by creepy crawlies. Or they imagine having to poop and pee in random locations throughout the experience, and even worse, they have to wipe their ass with leaves or the carcass of a rotting animal nearby.
When most people hear the words ‘adventure travel’ they imagine all of the above combined together plus a plane (or a bus with a smelly, curious goat in it) and they automatically say ‘not for me, but maybe one day’.
I’m here to challenge all of that. To challenge pre-conceived notions on what adventure travel actually means and to show you how trying one trip can be exactly what you need right now – because the preconceived notions of Adventure Travel mentioned above couldn’t be further than the truth.
I was once a corporate slave – yes I said it. Slave. My social life was slowly gasping for air, mostly because I was too tired to even attempt to bring it to life and my definition of a good time was spent doing absolutely nothing, a welcomed change from my brain-numbing career. Then I decided to try something different. I stepped outside my comfort zone, I obliterated my definition of a ‘good time’ and I ventured where I had never gone before into completely unknown territory. I went from happily smoking 2 packs a day with the idea of exercise being pressing the elevator button, to deciding that I was going to summit Kilimanjaro- the highest mountain in Africa
I traded my designer heels for hiking boots.
Sounds crazy doesn’t it? Well that’s exactly how I felt – crazy.
3 months later I proudly stood on the summit of Kilimanjaro and apparently I left a part of me at the summit sign because by the time I made it off the mountain – I was a completely different person. It was almost like every step I took down that mountain stripped a piece of me with it so I came down feeling lighter, better, more motivated and more importantly, I was inspired.
I realized that taking one step outside of my comfort zone not only completely changed my idea of what my comfort zone was, but it also changed my perspective, my goals, my desires and my entire outlook on life.
It changed everything.
The change was so drastic that it allowed me to apply the same level of change to literally everything I wanted from then onwards. I was miserable at my job so I quit! And damn that felt guuud! If your still a corporate slave – please don’t hate. ..celebrate.
I was unhappy with my life choices so I did something about it. I never went back to smoking again. Climbing Kilimanjaro made me feel invincible and that I was capable of doing anything and everything: I felt like a major badass.
And this part is for the ladies: when I told my mom I was going for Kilimanjaro, do you want to know what she said?
“Now no one will ever want to marry you!”
You want to know what happened? I met my husband on that mountain. Mmhmmm. Trust me I remind my mother of that everyday..
”Fakra lama olteee….”
Just so I can get my moment of spite, for once I turned out to be right! Ha!
There is so much power that we have in our lives and somehow the monotony and the social stigmas have tied our hands behind our own backs and made us believe that ‘this is it’. Taking one small 8-day trip changed all of that for me – imagine what it can do for you?
Going on an adventure doesn’t necessarily mean a mountain – it can mean anything. It can mean trying a new sport, a new activity, a new recipe, a new hobby, relaxing on a new beach – it can mean whatever you want it to mean as long as you are trying somethingdifferent and stepping out of your comfort zone.
In the fast-paced digital world that we live in today, it’s so easy for us to lose track of what’s real and what really matters. Sometimes we owe it to ourselves to break away, to unplug and to kick our own ass into trying something new. Its time we step away from our laptops, ipads, i-phones, and blackberries and touch real fruit, speak to real faces, and try new experiences that are not based on apps.
The time is not ‘one day’, it is not when I get around to it, the time is now. Today is that day. There is no better time to make a change and to try something different. There is no better time to treat yourself to a life changing experience. Become a true ‘thrillionaire’ and expose yourself to a world of opportunities and it truly is as simple as taking one trip that can be as short as a long weekend.
Get back out to the world and see what it has to offer, trust me, you will be surprised with you find out there and more importantly, what you will find within yourself.
It was hard going through this again. Listening to her voice, her words repeatedly lingering in my thoughts. Her love story, her challenges, her fears and beliefs. Her triumphs and success. I can see her again if when I remember her face glowing every time she would mention Wild Guanabana. We laughed on how I could never say it properly. We laughed with life.
May your soul rest in peace beautiful Marwa. You have inspired me in every way, every day. Our long conversations about travel and love always keeps me going, everyday. You are an inspiration to so many, you are loved by so many. Your stories will be told. We celebrate your life always. Forever. We celebrate your strength, courage and your life changing journeys. We celebrate you.
Marwa Fayed, wife to Omar Samra and mother to Teela Samra.
Click here to watch her video