5 Ways To Turn Every Day Into An Adventure

5 Ways To Turn Every Day Into An Adventure
Carly Jacobs

I walked into my tiny little classroom down the back of the school and found my teaching assistant, Jenny standing on a chair, stringing green crepe paper across the ceiling. She’d moved all the tables and chairs to the edges of the room, and there were strange piles of objects clumped together in a snake formation.

I smiled and said ‘What have you done now?’

She whipped around and said ‘Oh! I figured it would be super fun if we set the classroom up like We’re Going On A Bear Hunt. See here, these pillows are rocks! We can’t go over them; we can’t go under them, we have to AROUND them!’.

I adored working with her. Teachers assistants get paid peanuts for doing extraordinary work. Maintaining enthusiasm for a job where you get little respect and even less money is something I’ve seen a lot of assistants struggle with but not Jenny. She showed up every single day; her hair beautifully blow dried into these gorgeous Farrah Fawcett style waves. She always wore lacy tops with skinny jeans and little wedge shoes. Most people who work in special needs dress like farmers because it’s pretty grubby work a lot of the time, but Jenny always looked like she was going to an afternoon tea party. The students adored her; she turned everything into a fun game. At lunchtime, she’d turn on the radio and listen to the star signs and translate them for our little class.

‘Did you hear that Sarah? They just said that Capricorns should try something difficult today because their chances of success are high! I think we should ride the bike without training wheels today? What do you think?’

I always looked forward to working with her, because she made every day an adventure.

I’ve always loved the saying ‘be the type of person you want to meet’ and if you’re finding your days are lacking adventure or joy, here are a few things you can do to sort that out.


1. Make dance breaks mainstream

If you’re at work or at home and you’re not feeling it, you need to get on the dance break bandwagon. Crank some T-swift, Beyonce, Led Zeppelin, Queen, whatever floats your boat and go nuts for 3 to 5 minutes. Embarrassment is what stops people from doing this and shame is just about the most significant adventure killer around. You can do this by yourself, with your office buddy, with your kids. I even used to do it with my classes at school. Dance breaks get your blood pumping, they elevate your mood, and they’re a killer bonding exercise. Even if you just do them at the end of your morning tea and lunch break to gear yourself back up for a session of work.


2. Designate themes for days of the week

Almost a decade ago, I worked in an office with a woman who ended up being one of my favourite people. Our job was repetitive and boring, so we had these little rituals. We were both very health conscious so on Monday and Wednesday, I’d bring salads for both of us for lunch, and on Tuesdays and Thursdays, she’d bring salads. Coffee breaks were our favourite time of day, and we’d set timers and goals to complete specific tasks before we were allowed to take our breaks. This was around the time that internet shopping became huge and we’d have our purchases delivered to our office, but we always set goals for completing our work before we were allowed to open our parcels. We had Motivation Monday where we’d set our goals for the week and Funky Junky Friday where we were allowed to have a treat at morning tea time but only if we’d been ‘good’ leading up to that day. Our little rituals and routines made the job so much more pleasant and made being stuck at a desk all day, somewhat bearable.

3. Make a lunch date with someone you don’t usually hang out with

Monotony is the opposite of adventure, so avoid it at all costs. Sit with someone else at lunch today or go and meet someone for a coffee. Bring a deck of cards and play a game at lunchtime, or do the quiz in the paper as a group. I used to work at a school where we did the quiz from the Sydney Morning Herald every lunchtime and it was brutal. The prize was a Freddo Frog but there was only one given out every lunch and everyone wanted it. I’d bolt from classroom to the staffroom to get a good seat at the quiz table. It was so much fun and just a lovely thing to look forward to every day.


4. Start a lunchtime power walking group at work

If you spend all day sitting at your computer, then you sit at a lunch table, then go back to your computer you’re going to want to stab yourself in the face with a fork just to feel something other than mind-numbing boredom. Yes, getting changed is pain and sometimes you’ve only got time for a 20-minute walk, but it will change your afternoon. Get a whole group together and make it a fun activity that everyone gets excited about. You could join a walking charity and raise money for a good cause or track your steps to reach an office-wide goal. The trick for the success of activities like this is to make everyone care about it so get your enthusiasm boner on and be the leader of enthusiasm that your office needs.

5. Watch a movie in the middle of the week

When you work full time (as most people do), weeknights tend to consist of half watching whatever is on TV while you scroll through your phone. At least once a week, Mr Smaggle and I watch something ‘on purpose’. So on a Wednesday we might turn off all the lights, make cups of tea, banish our phones and watch a movie we’ve wanted to watch for ages. It just breaks up the week and makes us use our evenings rather than using them for passive and ineffective recovery from our jobs.

What little things do you do every day to make your day an adventure?

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  1. Missy D 10 months ago

    Our team plays music on Fridays – but we’re 90s grunge, not so much pop stuff. 😉 I quite enjoy that about our team. I also regularly go for coffee at about 9ish with both or one of my two favourite work friends. I’m pretty bad at taking a lunch break, but our office has been refurbished and as all these modern breakout and couchy areas, so I’ve started going to hide in one of them to read or do banking (or anything I normally wouldn’t do at work). Sometimes my work friends will find me and we’ll have a little chat. It’s small, but it’s a good reminder to step away from the screen for at least 30 minutes every day.

    • carlyjacobs 9 months ago

      I just ruin my coolness every time I mention music don’t I? I love offices with those little relaxy areas. I’ve never worked in an office with that kind of thing and I think it’s great.

  2. Vanessa 9 months ago

    Oh I like the idea of a Wednesday movie night. Breaks up the week nicely.

    • Author
      Carly Jacobs 9 months ago

      We actually ended up doing this last night, there was an amazing (terrible) Arnie film on last night and we just turned off all the lights and watched it. It was great.

  3. Rosie P 9 months ago

    LOVE the finishing line: “makes us use our evenings rather than using them for passive and ineffective recovery from our jobs.” Such a wake up call, who wants to spend their time like this? Thanks for your thoughts Smaggle! x

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