I have always gravitated toward adventurous people, lured by a desire, the same way I always watch planes taking off with a bit of envy. Perhaps it is being able to live an adventure by being close to it. When I was young, Indiana Jones was one of my favorite movies and I watched Star Wars over and over. I read every Hardy Boy book I could get my hands on. I loved reading about their adventures and the dangerous mysteries they solved.

I love adventure. Most men do.

And women like adventure too. How many women have secretly longed to be swept up in a fairy tale romance? It is not just the romance aspect that excites them. It’s the danger and excitement of the situation. A dashing hero rescues them from a wicked witch, an evil stepmother, a ferocious giant and takes them on an adventure.

That’s why so many women in today’s society go after bad men. Nice guys play it safe. Nice guys are boring. Nice guys don’t have any fun. It’s not always true, but it so often is. Women have the opposite perception and feeling when they meet a bad guy. Ooh! They are dangerous and exciting. Something is always about to happen around them. Flirting with that danger is an adventure that many women crave because it satisfies a longing within them to be part of something important and be worth saving.

So what is an adventurous spirit? Is it wanting to go hiking every weekend and preferring jeans and sneakers to a dress and high heels? No. Although, an adventurous spirit will see a mountain and want to climb it rather than go around it. That is a problem these days. So many of us want the quickest, easiest way around situations and problems in our life, rather than going through them, or over them. But that is the beauty and reward of an adventurous spirit. They realize the opportunity that mountains present and desire to grow and learn as people by pursuing these kind of challenges. The adventurous spirit wants to live life rather than avoid it.

A mountain takes effort and determination to climb, but the view at the top is incredible. Unencumbered by the confusion, noise, and distraction pressing in below, you can see clearly and far. What seemed like such a large mountain before, seems smaller and simpler from the top. When we struggle through our problems, it seems we grow and learn and equip ourselves so the problem doesn’t seem so daunting or scary. But only the adventurous are willing to climb the mountain.

A friend asked me, “What do I do? I don’t have any adventures to pursue. Nothing interesting ever happens around me.” I asked him what all the great adventure stories had in common. A goal. Indiana Jones had a woman to rescue, a magical jewel to find, Luke Skywalker had a space station to destroy and a history to uncover. Adventure needs a goal to propel it forward. The danger and excitement will follow.

Goals require a dreamer. Someone willing to have aspirations that they want to pursue. And that’s all of us. Some of us have forgotten them. We have allowed ourselves to become dulled by the things around us. We have allowed ourselves to become complacent in where we are and what we have now. We have allowed ourselves to let the pursuit of what the world values (money, position, recognition) steal our dreams. But those dreams still lurk within us, buried, yet eagerly hoping to get out. Because that is who we are. We are men built for dreaming.

Make no mistake, man is happiest when he is pursuing his dream, when he is on the adventure. It is at that time that he feels most alive. When he achieves it, he realizes what he was created for.

© Seth Crossman