Have you ever found yourself in a rut, feeling like you need to shake things up in your life? Do you ever find yourself wishing to escape the everyday monotony of your ordinary life for just a little while? You're not alone. Sometimes a rush of adrenaline is just what we need to give ourselves the jolt we can't get from our morning coffee or the thrill we can't get from driving the speed limit.
When you experience extreme fear, excitement, or the thrill of a risk or something new, your brain releases adrenaline. You feel more alert and perhaps more alive. While you may not want to aim to be an adrenaline junkie, seeking out the occasional thrill can be fun and shake us up a bit. After all, what's life without a little risk?
The problem with achieving these thrills is that the obvious (and scariest) solutions tend to be the most expensive. Jumping out of a plane, getting an elaborate tattoo at an unfamiliar parlor, or purchasing a motorcycle can be extremely expensive and downright unsafe. There are other exciting things that you can do to face your fears and not break your budget (or your neck). If you're in the market for an adrenaline rush, here are some ideas that you may not have considered.
Taking a Leap (or Jump) of Faith
Apart from being terrifying, activities like skydiving and bungee jumping can be pretty expensive. If you're looking for the thrill of the fall or the thrill of being high off the ground, there are definitely some cheaper (and safer) alternatives for you:
Go Skydiving Inside: apart from eliminating the risk of true skydiving, indoor skydiving is a lot cheaper. The feeling of flying in a wind tunnel is fun, exciting, and surprisingly realistic to real skydiving. The experience is so similar in fact that skydiving teams from all around use these types of wind tunnels to train in.
Most people are eligible to participate in indoor skydiving - even children above the age of 3. It is extremely safe, as a flight instructor will always be present, and you don't have to worry about any parachute malfunctions while you're thousands of feet above the ground!
The best part about indoor skydiving? You pay between $35-$50 typically for 2 minutes or so of flight time (which is equal to 3 skydives from 13,000 feet) instead of paying hundreds for a traditional skydive.
Indoor Rock Climbing: this fun activity will get you off the ground in a safe and controlled environment. You can rent gear and take advantage of professionals who are trained to help you safely enjoy your climb. You'll get the same kind of exercise and challenge that you'd get if you were climbing outside, but without so much risk. You can also do this activity relatively cheaply in many places. The gym near me offers indoor rock climbing for under $25, and that includes the rental fee for the gear.
Trapeze School: now this is one thing I can recommend from personal experience. Who knew that you don't have to run away and join the circus to experience the art of the trapeze? If you've ever wanted to feel what it's like to play on a flying trapeze, trapeze schools everywhere are a fun way to achieve that.
For my friend's 30th birthday, she got a group of friends together to go to trapeze class with her to conquer her fear of heights. For just $50, I got two hours of trapeze lessons and learned how to perform some really cool tricks. The feeling of swinging from the trapeze (safely outfitted with a secure brace, of course) was thrilling and provided such an incredible rush of adrenaline. Included in the price for the group was a CD of pictures of all of us in action and a DVD of our "performance."
There are many places where you can enjoy trapeze lessons. You can sign up for an individual class for yourself (which shouldn't cost you more than $50, depending on the location), sessions of lessons, or a party session for friends. You'll get a few thrills and you won't have to jump out of a plane, or, even scarier, pay hundreds of dollars for one jump.
Check Group Buying Sites for Discounts: if you are the ultimate thrill seeker and must experience the feeling of free falling from a plane, be sure to keep an eye on sites like Groupon or BuyWithMe. They sometimes feature deals for thrills in your area. One skydiving deal that I saw recently offered $100 off of a jump. Those kinds of savings are definitely worth looking for if you know you'll do the activity anyway.
Karaoke: while you may not consider singing in front of people a thrill, many people consider getting up in front of an audience downright dangerous. For a lot of people, getting up and performing on stage provides a nice little rush of adrenaline. But how can you do this if you're not a star? Why, your local karaoke bar, of course!
Many bars and establishments offer karaoke, whether regularly or for special events. In most cases, you need not pay a cent to sing karaoke (unless there is a cover to get into the bar). So get out there and test out a crowd with your exciting rendition of *insert song here*.
Amateur Comedy Night: if singing in front of people doesn't seem like a fun thrill, you could always test out your comedy routine on a crowd. Much like with karaoke, you can head to a bar or comedy club that welcomes new talent and get your thrills onstage for free or close to free.
Audition for Community Theater: auditioning for a play or musical in your community is completely free. If it's not, then it's a scam for sure. All you have to do is plug in the term "(Your State) Community Theater Auditions" into a Google search to see what auditions are coming up in your area. You'll need to check out the theater's website to find out what they require you to do for auditions. They may ask you to prepare a monologue, a minute or two of a song, and/or prepare to be taught a dance combination. Hey, if Michael Scott can do it, so can you!
If you're trying to combat stage fear, auditioning is definitely a great first and free step. And who knows? You might end up starring in your community's next big show. And if not, well, at least the people you're auditioning for are not allowed to laugh at you (unless that's you're intention, of course)!
Need for Speed
So you're thinking about getting motorcycle to prove that you're still young and cool? Before you take that big and expensive step, why not try tackling a sport you've never tried before? You could try your hand at your kid's skateboard or get a used one from a garage sale. How about rollerblading, ice skating or roller skating? You'll feel the wind in your face and definitely get a bit of a thrill, especially if it's an activity you've never tried before. Just make sure to wear the appropriate protective padding!
Thrill of Changing Yourself
Popular options here tend to be getting tattoos or body piercings, which are not necessarily the cheapest or safest option in terms of making a change to your appearance. Here are a few alternatives:
Henna Tattoos: not ready to tattoo a permanent design onto your body? Or are you just not ready to pay for it? Henna is a great alternative. Henna can basically create elaborate stained patterns anywhere on the body. You can purchase henna kits for a just a few dollars, or you can have a professional do it for $10-$40, depending on the intricacy of the design you'd like. The dye will start to fade after 3-4 weeks, so you'll get more wear out of a henna tattoo than with fake press-on tattoos.
Dye Your Hair for (Almost) Free: if you're in a hair rut, you don't need to spend tons at the salon for a new 'do. You can dye your hair at home with items you probably already have. You could try highlighting your hair at home with lemon juice. You could even try henna on your hair. If none of these options work for you, you can always cough up the little money it costs to get store bought dye. Either way, change can be cheap!
Chop Your Hair: if you have long hair and are willing to chop off at least 10 inches, you may be able to get a free care cut while at the same time getting the thrill of change. Check out sites like Locks of Love or Beautiful Lengths to see if you can donate your hair to a good cause and earn yourself a free cut.
Get Lost (for Less)
There is a certain kind of thrill that comes from being lost. Many people get a thrill from wandering around in a place that they don't know. Instead of putting yourself in foreign territory and paying for travel or driving around an unfamiliar area and wasting gas, you could check out a local corn maze.
Corn mazes are really fun and are a great activity to participate in this time of year. Many corn mazes also have pumpkin patches, hayrides, autumn food and more. Admission at some of these places is between $7-$10 (sometimes a bit more for special events, like Haunted Corn Mazes at night) and you get to journey your way through an elaborate maze. Also, children's prices are usually cheaper and young children often get in for free. Here are a few sites that will help you find a corn maze in your area:
Old Scary Movies: you don't need to hit the movie theater for this thrill. Just in time for Halloween, there's probably a whole host of scary movies out there that you've never seen. Invite a few friends over, rent one of these movies from the library, grab a snack and a blanket, turn the lights off (except for maybe a flickering candle) and prepare to have the pants scared off of you for free.
Curl Up With a Scary Book: get a good thriller from the library and curl up with blanket in a dim room. If you get a good scary book, you're sure to jumping at the slightest noises.
Haunted Theme Parks: if you can find a great coupon online for a local haunted theme park, now is definitely the time of year to visit. Most places pull out all the stops for Halloween, and you're guaranteed to have the pants scared off of you. An even cheaper option is to check out special events at corn mazes. Many have special nights where the "spookify" their mazes to make them haunted.
What are some ways that you achieve adrenaline rushes on the cheap? How do you get yourself out of a rut when you feel that life is a bit too hum drum for your liking? Are you an adrenaline junkie? Please share your thoughts and ideas with us in the comments section below and thanks for being a Tip Hero!