SEP 22 2011

What would you regret 20 years from now?

Exploring attitude

Exploring whatever you want: the woods, your own backyard, the city -you may explore the world, your inner world or the virtual world …really, whatever you want-, is the main subject that has being covered lately here in Frugal Science.

Explorer collage: Exploring is a journey.

click to enlarge

The suggested idea is that simple exploring may be achieved by almost anyone, anywhere by tuning into an “exploring attitude”. But before we plunge deeper into what exactly is an “exploring attitude”, let’s take a look to how can we benefit from it in our daily life.

Be aware that during this discussion we will be focusing on the internal benefits; not so much on the outcomes of exploring.

The obvious most important benefit of exploring are its outcomes. Exploring leads to discoveries (inventions, territories, medicine, knowledge, etc.), some of which have became critical breakthroughs in the history of mankind.

In your own neck of the woods, exploring may lead you to find unexpected opportunities, creative solutions or useful fresh information of all kind. The spectrum is as wide as your potential objectives. We will not be covering that.

The point is that the mere action of starting an exploration of something, independently from the outcome, demands such a change of your will and the way you look at things that you get instant rewards.


So, the primal question is: “Why should we explore?”

We should explore as much as we can for many reasons, and we will be covering many of them (your input will be highly appreciated at this point, thank you), but let’s start with the best answer to that question that I have ever read.

It’s this memorable quote from Mark Twain which I have partially posted in a previous article about exploring (and mentioned it in a couple more), this time at its full extend:


Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”


Needless to say, this quote has being highly inspirational to me along my career as a professional explorer.

The term “exploring” may be used in many ways. It may be used as “testing” something we consider valid, or “trying” something completely new to us. In every case, exploring implies both a journey (physical or metaphoric) and learning something new.

It’s a journey because we always have to start by making that initial decision to overcome an internal resistance: the fear of learning something new. Is the same fear referred by Albert Einstein when he talked about the resistance that highly developed spirits often encounter (yes, that resistance is also hiding inside every one of us).

People don’t like to see things differently from what they have been seeing all along (which is interesting because is the natural instinct of exploring which have lead human civilization to its progress).

And is a learning journey because being present is an inevitable condition when you explore, and the things you experience yourself are the lessons you never forget.

So, are you ready to “Sail Forth- Steer for the deep waters only. Reckless O soul, exploring…” –as Walt Whitman would have suggested?


You are? Now, this looks promising…


There are 29 comments

  • Steve Rice on said:

    Love, love, love the tone of this post, Gustavo!

    I really liked the connection with Einstein’s observation. I just posted a video about creating forward momentum in life. I’m more determined than ever to do something extraordinary every day!
    Steve Rice recently posted..Unpacking the Oprah Interview

  • gustavo on said:

    Sail away, my friend! Remember that is not the destination what makes the traveler a master.

  • Larry Lewis on said:

    I find it heartbreaking how many people make the decision to stand still in their life, and forego all their dreams. To me life is a journey, one that i have always intended to make the most of, and to explore every opportunity i could find to better myself, and love everything i do.
    Larry Lewis recently posted..The Ultimate Success Formula

  • tori on said:

    Great post! It’s too easy to live complacently day in and day out. It’s also boring. Better to end each day having done/learned/loved something!

  • Sherrie Koretke on said:

    Brilliant! I love exploring. You’ve only motivated me to explore some more. Exploring to me is all about learning. Learning about myself and the world around me. I like how you explain exploring isn’t just about travel. Isn’t that what life is about? To explore the boundaries outside of ourselves?
    Sherrie Koretke recently posted..Crafting Your Life’s Work

  • Desi on said:

    The fear of learning new things is a difficult to overcome, especially for adults who have already failed at a fair number of things and remember the sting and profound embarrassment. I tell my toddlers to get up and try again, every time they fall. And they trust that it will be okay, if they do. I’m so grateful to have so many little explorers in my life :)
    Desi recently posted..Sadly, I Still Can’t Juggle

  • Samantha Bangayan on said:

    Ooh! Amazing post, Gustavo! I’m tackling that fear of learning something new daily these days and it’s accompanied by the fear of what other people will think of me, which I logically know is ridiculous, but it’s still overwhelming. =P I’m referring to dance and acrobatics! I feel ridiculous trying out dance moves and seeing my body *not* do what I want to, yet I want to keep on chugging along to see if I can eventually achieve something. I feel like I can!! Thanks so much for this encouraging post, friend! =) I *do* want to be an explorer!
    Samantha Bangayan recently posted..Conquer Self-Doubt with Reminders of the Past

  • Pam on said:

    Great post that brings back lots of memories. I know I learned by experimenting in my teens. My parents were not too happy about it, but, I learned by doing, that was the only way it was going to happen. I don’t regret it, I never would have made it here today if I changed the past. SO, explore on everyone! My son is the same, he has to see for himself why something doesn’t work. Wait till he is a teenage, I’m in trouble!
    Pam recently posted..Don’t fear Friday!

  • Gustavo| Frugal Science on said:

    Hi, Larry!

    I know what you mean! It is very common to see that attitude, especially when following your dreams implies leaving your comfort zone. Life is always changing and we have to change with life, otherwise, we might be lest behind.
    Gustavo| Frugal Science recently posted..What would you regret 20 years from now?

  • Gustavo| Frugal Science on said:

    Hi Sherrie!

    Always one step ahead of me! My next post is about what you just said: exploring is about learning. Only an exploring mind is capable of learning (says Krishnamurti).
    Gustavo| Frugal Science recently posted..What would you regret 20 years from now?

  • Gustavo| Frugal Science on said:

    Hi, Desi!
    I love it when you apply these ideas to your little ones, especially because my youngest son is 3 years old (I don’t know if I mentioned it to you before). My friend Roy Ackerman mentioned a couple of days ago that the best way to learn to explore is guiding a toddler through learning how the world works.
    Gustavo| Frugal Science recently posted..What would you regret 20 years from now?

  • Gustavo| Frugal Science on said:

    Hi, Sam!
    I am very glad you liked it, but let me tell you something: you are already an explorer, traveling from Canada, amidst the trade winds through the Andes’ mountains like Humboldt. And you can dance too! (I bet that beats Humboldt).
    Gustavo| Frugal Science recently posted..What would you regret 20 years from now?

  • Gustavo| Frugal Science on said:

    Hi, Pam!
    Thanks for paying a visit and sharing your very useful idea. It resonates with what my friend Roy Ackerman mentioned a couple of days ago, that the best way to learn to explore is guiding your children through learning how the world works. Awesome!
    Gustavo| Frugal Science recently posted..What would you regret 20 years from now?

  • critters and crayons on said:

    I hope my kids have an exploring nature- I think they do- I hope they keep it.

  • Eleanor on said:

    Hi Gustavo,
    Loved this post, I’ve been exploring more and more by having people like yourself in my life. Your post has encouraged me to explore yet another idea I have today! Perfect timing,

    Have a great day,


  • Jennifer Woodard on said:


    I love the idea of exploring, I find that lately I am not doing enough of it and really need to get back to being curious about life. I am usually tied up with just getting through the day and really exploring things outside of what I already know. I will think about this today, being feeling a little in a rut lately, maybe exploring is just what I need,.

    Happy blogging,
    Jennifer Woodard recently posted..Are you Preventing Your Current Customers from Becoming Loyal Customers?

  • Mike Martin on said:

    Hi Gustavo. Loved your post. Really got me thinking. Thanks. Anything that wakes up whatever gray matter I have left is a good thing

  • gustavo on said:

    Hey, Martin!

    Thanks for comment and for visiting!

  • Evangelina Dyer on said:

    Amazing post, Gustavo! My son is the same, he has to see for himself why something doesn’t work. I know what you mean!
    Evangelina Dyer recently posted..Cancer Tattoos Tumblr

  • gustavo on said:

    Hi, Evangelina! Thank you for visiting and commenting

  • Dian Wijayanti on said:

    Great post! Thanks for sharing this! You sure just encourage me more to do things I’ve been wanting to do and make it come true! Thanks!
    Dian Wijayanti recently posted..Sang Penari (The Dancer)

  • Natasha Devalia on said:

    I loved the Twain quote. Thanks for sharing it. I have twin toddlers who are explorers…lately I feel that I am fighting an urge to close up. It’s coming from fatigue. I won’t let it happen! Have to keep exploring.
    Natasha Devalia recently posted..On “The Art of Choosing”: A Talk by Sheena Iyengar

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    Behind Frugal Science
    Hi there! I’m Gustavo and Frugal Science is about helping you rediscover your exploring nature and enjoying the benefits of looking life in a different way. Anybody can become a true explorer –it’s our nature-, all you need is a mindful attention and some frugal science.
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