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You are browsing the archive for spontaneity Archives - ᘡ Adventure Lab ᘠ ... rock paper estrogen.

Borrowing a little childhood magic to reboot a bad day

June 30, 2016 in , by Sue Braiden

Childhood Magic

You don’t have to be Alexander to have a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.

Sometimes, you just have to get out of bed, and that’s enough.

So when you have one of those days, what to do?

I’ve found that one of the most powerful reset buttons is the “willing suspension of disbelief” that comes wrapped up in a children’s tale on the silver screen.

Here’s why …

Where’s the Beef? (and how a really bad movie can be a really great tool for checking in with yourself)

May 18, 2016 in , , by Sue Braiden

Where's the Beef? (and how a really bad movie can be a really great tool for checking in with yourself)

I’m always on the look-out for good Adventure Diva movies, and when I stumbled across “I’ll See You in My Dreams” on Netflix, I thought I’d found one.

I was wrong.

The premise was a woman named Carol confronting her age, and realizing her life had become predictable and mundane. With a husband who had been dead for twenty-years, and a handful of friends pushing her to get out there and date again (while simultaneously pushing for her to move to a retirement community), Carol is reluctant to change, until a set of chance encounters turns that on it’s head.

So far, so good. Clinging to the familiar and fear of the unknown, even if things have gotten stale, is relatable enough, and I was encouraged by the promise that Carol was about to push way out of her comfort zone and shake things up.

It had potential, until it slid straight into a quagmire of clichés.

I wanted this movie to be great, and while I found it predictable, completely implausible, and definitely disappointing, it served a wonderful purpose: it made me check in with myself every time I complained. If it made me so damned mad, what was it that I thought should have happened instead? I was cheering for these women. I wanted them to be brave. I wanted them to get off their asses and go out there and grab a hold of life and shake the hell out of it.

And that’s what made it great in an unexpected way. Anything that shakes you out of your comfort zone, that gets you questioning what’s important to you, that moves you to want to take a step, make a change, is a tool to be grateful for.

So I ask you, sister Adventure Divas, what is the perfect happy ending? What is it out there in the wild blue yonder that calls to your Adventure Diva soul? What will your life be incomplete without?

What calls you, know matter how crazy it may seem? And more importantly, what’s stopping you?

Let’s put our elbows on the kitchen table and talk about it!

Spontaneity: the gateway drug to mirth, and an Adventure Diva’s best friend.

February 1, 2015 in , by Sue Braiden

Spontaneity: the gateway drug to mirth, and an Adventure Diva's best friend.

I’ve been thinking about a moment riding the bus, when a mother boarded, pushing her son in a stroller. As she stopped to pay the fare, the toddler looked straight down the aisle, then hollered “Hey, everybody! How ya doin’?” The entire bus erupted into laughter, and in an instant the invisible cord that had tied us all to our seats, silently bound by some misguided sense of propriety, had been broken. Everyone was talking with each other and laughing the entire way home. It was brilliant!

Kids have such incredible social capital. How do we manage to rob ourselves of that as we grow up?

And what does that have to do with this picture? Well, it captured a moment when I knew the value of that. It was snapped just hours before an earlier picture I shared of a couple celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary at the Banff Springs Hotel. (If my clothes don’t give it away, this was in the early 80s … lol). I was on a business trip in the west, and before going to dinner my colleagues and I were driving through the mountains, and stumbled upon the icy Bow Valley river where Marilyn Monroe had sprained her ankle filming in her first starring role in a western back in 1953. Not one to miss an opportunity for hijinks, I dragged one of my allies out onto the rocks in our heels. She had the sense to take hers off and leave them on the shore, but there I was, heading out to a spot just below the rapids, dragging her in.

It’s one of those moments that’s stuck with me all my life, because, 30 years later, I can still remember how good it felt to say “to hell with propriety, we’re going in!” and how much we laughed our heads off the entire time. Spontaneity is highly under-rated. It’s the gateway drug to mirth, and an Adventure Diva’s best friend.

In case you hadn’t noticed, age isn’t a 4-lettered word (and how a drag queen’s pink coat might be your next parade) …

August 8, 2014 in , , , by Sue Braiden

In case you hadn’t noticed, age isn’t a 4-lettered word (and how a drag queen’s pink coat might be your next parade) …

It’s cold out today. Last night was so chilly I actually pulled my fleece lounge pants on. This wouldn’t be so surprising if it wasn’t still early in August, the supposed “dog days of summer”.

I was thinking about this as I was making a cup of tea to warm up, and it occurred to me that I had already been pining the “near end” of summer way back in July. I catch myself doing this each year, already ringing my hands over the loss of the precious heat and inevitable slide into fall, even though the season might be just weeks old. As much as I love fall, look forward to picking apples and making pumpkin pies, I never really shake off the notion of it as “an end”.

And this is why I still have not learned to embrace being 51. It feels like my autumn. My hair is more than touched with frost, and there are plenty of the tiny but ever-marching betrayals of my body as it sheds the gifts of youth and becomes something I no longer recognize as myself.

Why does aging come with so much grief? Why do we dread it? Go to such lengths to hide it and push it off? And how do we turn this wasted angst into something more productive that helps us learn to love this very moment where we are right now?

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