Ladies and Gentlemen, I have a special guest with me today. Lesley Carter of Bucket List Publications goes on more adventures in one year than most people will in their lifetimes. She has a passion for life and living it to the fullest, even when it means facing her fears.

Welcome to my blog, Lesley! Thank you for joining me. Your website and blog showcase many pictures of you going on extreme adventures, such as rock climbing, white water rafting, skydiving, and much more. Some of these activities are considered too dangerous by other people, but you seem fearless. Do you feel you are braver than most people?

I am most definitely not braver than others. Actually, I have a great fear of a lot of the things I do, especially swimming with marine life. There is nothing more empowering, though, than accomplishing something when you fear it. It is liberating!

Whale shark and divers

Lesley overcoming one of her greatest fears to swim with a shark.

You swam with whale sharks twice. I’d say they definitely qualify as marine life. Tell us about the moment you
really decided to take your courage in your hands and do it.

I feel like I’ve accomplished a lot in my life and I never let fear or obstacles stop me. I love the ocean, swimming, body boarding, and surfing but I always had that fear of what was around me. When we moved to North Carolina, I was searching for adventures near me and swimming with the sharks at the Georgia Aquarium kept popping up. I realized I was putting it off because of fear. I was sitting there with my daughter, who I want to teach that we can accomplish even our most unrealistic dreams and goals, and I knew that I had to do it. If I want to teach her to face her fears and live life to the fullest, I have to follow the philosophy too!

Are there any adventures you would like to have some day, but you’re putting them off because they require you to overcome a fear you’re just not ready to give up?

That was swimming with sharks until this year. I finally gave in and swam with whale sharks, among countless others, at the Georgia Aquarium. It was one of the most liberating, life-changing moments of my life. Now, I want to get PADI certified and scuba dive at the Great Barrier Reef. There is a whole new world for me to explore and I almost missed out on it because of fear.

Lesley holding a Burmese python

Lesley overcoming another fear: snakes.

I’ve tried some pretty crazy things to get rid of my fear of heights, including riding a bicycle balanced on a rope suspended 100 feet in the air, but I’m still terrified of high places. Is there some factor I’m missing? What would you suggest I do to overcome my fear?

Go skydiving! When you go tandem skydiving, it’s the instructor that does all of the hard work and you reap all of the benefits. Overcoming one of your greatest fears is one of the best feelings in the world! Just set your mind to “robot” mode and forget about everything else. Once you’re in the air and you experience the thrill of it, you’ll long to go back.

Lesley holding her baby

Lesley and Athena

You have a beautiful baby girl. Does she inspire you to push yourself further, or do you feel more protective of yourself for her sake?

I feel a little bit of both. I don’t like to put myself in unnecessary danger, but I don’t feel like things like skydiving or rafting are any more dangerous than driving down the highway. The thought of her growing up without a mother brings tears to my eyes but I want us to experience every day to the fullest. I want to be a role model and inspire greatness, overcoming fears and limitations.

Is there anything you refuse point-blank to do because it seems too risky or because you have a particular reason for being wary of it?

Flying a wing-suit. I don’t think I know enough about it yet to want to do it; maybe that will change in time but I have no desire right now.

Lesley Skydiving

Lesley overcoming one of MY fears. Maybe one day I’ll try.

If there is one thing everyone should do, even if it means facing their greatest fear, what do you think it is?

Skydiving. It is breathtaking and adrenaline-filled. There is nothing that compares to putting your foot outside of the plane and jumping, letting go!

To read about some of Lesley’s adventures on her blog, click here.