How to Accept Change, and Embrace the Adventures of 2023
Each trip around the Sun takes us a bit further away from the people we used to be. Dwell on this fact for too long, and doubt may start to creep in.
Welcome back to Cole’s Climb; I hope you had a wonderful New Year, and holiday season! Last week brought an end to a few weeks of hectic travel; so I thought I’d wait until everyone was settled back in before offering up this brief new outlook on 2023.
For me, big life changes take a long time to sink in. You’ve probably experienced this to some degree if you’ve ever moved to a new home or apartment: some mornings you’ll wake up, roll over, open your eyes, and be surprised to be in a new bedroom.
When I moved to costal Florida back in 2017, I had the same moment of incredulous disbelief every day at the same point along my morning commute. I would zoom down a boulevard lined with towering palm trees, bordered by open water on both sides. Ahead was the sprawling city skyline, backlit by the early morning sun.
This vista — more than anything else — triggered a bit of an existential crisis about relocating hundreds of miles. It was usually accompanied by an audible exclamation of, “Oh my God, I’m so far from home.”
This took me almost two years to get over. It’s not that I was afraid or unsure of my decision and my new life. This reaction was awe. I was shocked I had actually made such a drastic change, adapted, and adjusted.
Those reading who knew me growing up will understand why.
Right up until my senior year of college, I believed I would get a job close to home, maybe a half hour or so away so I could have a little space to myself. If someone had told me I would travel the country, I would’ve laughed.
Less than a month before I graduated, I was offered what felt like a dream job. Instead of returning to the quiet hills and winding roads of my hometown, I moved to the heart of bustling Buffalo; where Canada is within spitting distance and you measure snowstorms in feet, not inches.
The more I lived outside my hometown, and later my home state, the more I realized I couldn’t go back. I had fundamentally changed.
Seeing yourself as a new person is hard, because it requires more honesty and introspection than we typically feel comfortable with. That existential crisis I felt when driving downtown had nothing to do with the location. It wasn’t just that I was far from home; I was far from the person I used to be.
Once I realized that, the shock of being in the new place faded away.
When I moved to Colorado, I had a similar feeling of awe each day. It happened when I drove west, watching the sun sink over the towering mountains and foothills.
Every day I say the same thing: “I could never get tired of this.”
I Want to Hear from You
Would the version of you from 10, or even 5 years ago recognize who you became today? If you could go back and meet them, what would you say?
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