In a world driven by pattern and formation, we often misuse the concept of consistency.
While consistency is good and creates predictability, humans miss the importance of transitioning between order and adventure.
On December 2, CICS students participated in the “Accenture Challenge,” an all-night project dealing with an RFP that produces a ten-page group paper and presentation by 8am the following morning. The challenge is hosted by Accenture.
I, along with my classmates, had the opportunity to participate. My team’s proposal involved the integration of a mobile website, opportunities for cloud computing, and internet connectivity options for cruise ship looking to upgrade their ships.
Our minds were set free by the night, allowing thoughts to flow where dreams usually reside.
It was by this night that I recognized my need to break the abundance of standards and enter into the realm of an extraordinary life.
Maintaining a usable and steady mind for 32 hours without rest is not an easy feat for an individual with little practice in the field of sleepless nights (not involving the nights with limited sleep; those happen often. This is a different matter in entirety).
But as I drove away from Student Center on Ball State University’s campus following the challenge, a sudden awakening came upon me.
You’ve made it this far. Why not keep going?
“Go,” my heart said. I went home, changed clothing, and threw two extra sweaters and a pair of jeans in my bag. I hopped in my car, filled it with gas, and quickly sped away.
231.4 miles later, I landed in the home of my undergraduate college for the second time this week: this time, without plans, without rules, and without a place to stay.
Welcome to Holland, Sophie.
After realizing I had arrived without any sort of structure, I began to laugh. I didn’t tell anyone I would be here.
I parked in the old lot next to the dorm I lived in freshman year: everything was familiar, but oh, so very different.
After four rings, my friend answered her phone.
“Come over,” she said. “We’re having a Christmas party.”
I stayed there that night and saw my boss and his wife from undergrad, many people from my church, and ate my weight in chips and queso. I stayed up late and got up early.
After five hours of sleep, I wandered into an empty coffee shop at 7am the following morning to drink tea and read a good book. The lake called my name and I drove the sweet seven miles to the shore of Lake Michigan. I met up with my cousin at the library and drank Chaider with an Apple Cinnamon muffin. Now, as I’m about to hit the road again back to Muncie, I will remember this one thing: Adventure in chaos is exciting. Spontaneity does not create fear.
The more we encounter, the less we fear.
Challenge the challenges. Life will bring monotony, and it is up to us to decide how to break the flow of normalcy. It can be easily done: walking on the opposite side of the sidewalk, adding hazelnut flavor to the usually-black cup of coffee drank on Tuesdays. It can be more complex: hopping on a plane to Australia after throwing $2,000 on an airport counter, learning a new language. This life is meant to be lived, and lived well.
At the root of communication, our actions matter. And the actions we choose sets others free to do the same.