I’ve been casually talking with different friends about getting a tattoo for the past few years, but I never went through with it. For awhile I wanted the outline of an airplane (like the airplane symbol on a sign for the airport) because, well, I really like traveling and being on planes (go figure).
But over the past few months, I started thinking about getting a different tattoo — the words “Get Up. Go. Explore.” In addition to being the tagline of this site, Get Up. Go. Explore. is also somewhat of a personal motto.
Get Up. Go. Explore. is a simple statement that resonates with me. It’s a three step process, that if followed, guarantees you’ll lead an exciting and full life.
This is what Get Up. Go. Explore. means to me:
Step 1: Get Up – The very first step to any adventure in life (not just the kind related to travel) is simply to start, to begin, to not just say, “I’m going to do this,” but to physically get up and start doing it and making it happen. Stop being lazy and making excuses. This is the hardest part of the process because it’s usually a whole lot easier to stay inactive, to remain passive and to stay seated while your life takes you for a ride vs. getting up and getting in the driver’s seat.
Step 2: Go – Once you’ve gotten up, the battle is half over but certainly not won. It’s now time to step out the door and to follow through. Most people can muster up the courage to get up and make it to the door, but then quickly find themselves standing there, looking outside and saying, “I can’t really do this,” or “this is scary.” So what do they do? They go sit back down. Go means taking that next step, it means actually putting in the work (for example: saving the money, planning the trip and packing the suitcase) and heading in the direction of whatever it is you’re after. Go requires motivation and inspiration, two things you may sometimes feel like you lack. But keeping Go in mind and remembering that we can’t get to the third and best step without it, should help you push through.
Step 3: Explore – This is the best step — it’s the pay off for getting up and going. When you make it here you’ll probably say to yourself, “I wish I got here sooner, but I’m really glad I’m here now.” Explore is the place where memories are made, a place where you’re constantly learning and a place where you’re always changing and growing as a person. Explore also takes work. It involves a conscious effort to not just be somewhere, but to be a part of it. It’s about being actively engaged with the world around you, seeking out new experiences, trying new things, testing yourself, occasionally failing and then succeeding.
Although this three step process is one you’ll likely go through thousands and thousands of times throughout your life, the goal is to live as much of your life as you can in an Explore mindset. The goal is to make getting up and going second nature and such a part of who you are that you don’t even think about it, you just do it. Being in this mindset will therefore allow you more time to spend exploring (instead of just thinking about it) and that’s a very good thing.
Have I mastered this yet? Absolutely not — but it’s something I’m working on everyday.
Last Friday night I was again talking with a friend about getting a tattoo (this time with my friend Jack). He showed me a list of 10 recommended tattoo shops in LA, and feeling motivated, he and I decided to go check out Velvet Grip, a tattoo shop in Hollywood that was open late.
I walked in and spoke with one of their tattoo artists about the “Get Up. Go. Explore.” tattoo I had in mind. After realizing all four words would take up a larger portion of my arm than I wanted, I decided to narrow it down to the most meaningful word in the phrase, the only singular word I would want tattooed on my skin and the word that exemplifies the mindset which I’m always working to perfect: Explore.
The artist then transferred a mock version of the tattoo (the word “Explore” in a small century gothic font) onto the outside of my wrist/forearm. I liked it.
I had no intention of getting a tattoo that night when I woke up that morning, but I’d been thinking about it for some time and I was in a tattoo shop, so I thought, “why not now?” Unable to answer that question, I finally chose an ink color (a natural medium brown), hopped up on the table and went through with it.
Here’s the Video:
Thanks to my friend Jack for coming along and shooting the video!