54 episodes

After exploring the world and embracing adventure often in my teens and twenties, I realized the shift to motherhood and a professional career was threatening the amount of adventure that showed up in my life. I responded by reframing the destination to a journey. In designing a life of adventure we nurtured the creation of new experiences, challenged the status quo, and tested our risk tolerance. 10 years and 3 children later, these intentional family adventures were far greater than any destination. These simple and authentic adventure experiences had a noticeable impact on every member in the family. Adventure is an ingredient in our lives that allows everyone to connect deeper and show up as their authentic selves.

The quest for the summit requires support from a tribe of helpers, a noble force of goodness and strength known as Sherpas. They push each person toward their summit and celebrate peaks and pits together. This mighty crew of listeners and the community we are forming online are the ordinary everyday people who support families connecting and experiencing authentic adventures together. We are Ordinary Sherpa, a podcast designed to share learning and create community to inspire families to experience joy and connection together through adventure.

Ordinary Sherpa: Family Adventure Coaching and Design Heidi Dusek

    • Education
    • 5.0 • 82 Ratings

After exploring the world and embracing adventure often in my teens and twenties, I realized the shift to motherhood and a professional career was threatening the amount of adventure that showed up in my life. I responded by reframing the destination to a journey. In designing a life of adventure we nurtured the creation of new experiences, challenged the status quo, and tested our risk tolerance. 10 years and 3 children later, these intentional family adventures were far greater than any destination. These simple and authentic adventure experiences had a noticeable impact on every member in the family. Adventure is an ingredient in our lives that allows everyone to connect deeper and show up as their authentic selves.

The quest for the summit requires support from a tribe of helpers, a noble force of goodness and strength known as Sherpas. They push each person toward their summit and celebrate peaks and pits together. This mighty crew of listeners and the community we are forming online are the ordinary everyday people who support families connecting and experiencing authentic adventures together. We are Ordinary Sherpa, a podcast designed to share learning and create community to inspire families to experience joy and connection together through adventure.

    053 | Growing up Mountain Biking with Katy McDicken

    053 | Growing up Mountain Biking with Katy McDicken

    To Connect regarding the Intention workshop Email: heidi@ordinarysherpa.com

    If you enjoy the ideas, find joy or inspiration from my work, you can buy me a coffee to say thanks and support the show.   
    Website for this episode:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/053 Subscribe to the email List:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/subscribe/

    Our guest today indirectly thrust our family onto Mountain biking and single trek trails.  As I have mentioned several times, my husband Mr. Dusek has been a teacher for the past 20 years and this student was someone who intrigued him.  When I began this podcast over a year ago we were on a long drive across the state and brainstorming adventurous families we’d love to have a conversation with and my husband mentioned the McDicken family.  Katy McDicken has been mountain biking since she was 7 years old and was not excited about sitting on the sidelines watching her brother race.  She quickly immersed herself into the competitive world of mountain biking and later transitioning into cyclocross.  Today she is a sophomore at Marian University in Indiana where she competes on the cyclocross team and studies mechanical engineering and mathematics.  
    Key Takeaways
    Mountain Biking trails are a good metaphor for life. The trail is rocky and rutted and the only way to get through it is to pedal harder.  Sometimes you just need to do the work and grind through the rough terrain.   Sometimes we bond through our differences.  As Katy mentioned, since there are few females in mountain biking, the shared experience of being a female mountain biker has been a bonding experience.  Katy also shared that through both biking and engineering most of her friends are guys.   Moms, sometimes the greatest adventure is allowing our kids to try something that scares us.   Not all of our kid’s adventures and passions will be driven by parents' experiences.  In the McDicken family the roles were reversed and the kids inspired the dad to race.   If you are interested in learning more about mountain biking WORS in Wisconsin ( https://wors.org/americas-largest-state-mountain-bike-racing-series ) NICA(https://www.nationalmtb.org/) and USA Cycling (https://usacycling.org/ )are great places to start.   Hidden gems are locally owned bike shops.  They often know the nuisances of the trails and are hubs for the biking community.  If you are traveling and interested in hitting some mountain bike trails, make sure to check out the local bike shops for some untouristy local insights as well.  Also mentioned was the App Trail Forks.   If you are interested in learning more about mountain biking or cyclocross, want to explore racing, or just want to support Katy McDicken in her quest for a National Title, you can follow Katy on her social handles in the show notes.  If you are in the Chicagoland area this weekend and up for a different experience the link to national cyclocross is in the show notes as well.  USA Cycling Cyclocross nationals.  Whether or not Mountain Biking is your thing or not, I hope this episode exposes you to new opportunities and inspires you to explore what adventures are available in your own backyard.  I was pleasantly surprised to learn more about the Mountain Biking network in our neck of the woods.
    Name: Katy McDicken
    Email: katymcdicken@gmail.com
    Facebook: Katy McDicken
    Instagram: katymcdicken
    Twitter: katymcdicken

    • 23 min
    052 | Living a Location Independent Lifestyle with Rachel Richards

    052 | Living a Location Independent Lifestyle with Rachel Richards

    I did a thing this week, I sent my book to the editor.  
    In some ways it feels like a major step on a new and uncomfortable experience. Writing a book has been on the long life list of things I wanted to do someday. I know this isn't the summit. The manuscript will come back in a couple weeks marked and dismantled, but I am excited for that. It means someone else is going to see something I spent 3 months writing and another month editing. It's out of my hands and further down the path.
    I strongly encourage taking a look at your someday-maybe list. With the thanksgiving holiday coming up it might be a great time to sit down with family and review/revisit/create that someday-maybe list. I love talking about the someday-maybe list, the dream list (maybe you have another name for it), but taking the steps to do the thing is a different kind of experience. I highly recommend it! I'm definitely at a checkpoint and ready for a snack still a ways off from the summit. What is something on your someday-maybe list that you would like to take action on?

    Website for this episode: https://ordinarysherpa.com/052
    Subscribe to the email List:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/subscribe/

    Earlier this year I participated in a Book-writing Mastermind call that Rachel Richards led. She was one of few who inspired me to write a book.  Her authentic and audacious voice in the financial space made the content fun, simple and welcome change from the stuffy and dry tone more common in the space.  At the age of 27, Rachel quit her job and retired, living off over $15,000 per month in passive income. Rachel has made a name for herself in the personal finance realm as the bestselling author of Money Honey and Passive Income, Aggressive Retirement. The reason I invited Rachel on Ordinary Sherpa was watching her navigate a season of location independent lifestyle with her husband and dog.  She set out for months  living vivaciously in AirBnbs, making a second side following as a hiking influencer exploring the peaks and valleys of the western United States.
    Key Takeaways
    Never underestimate the parenting benefits of having a strong-willed child.  Look at Rachel as an example of what is possible Times have changed but the way we look at retirement hasn't.  Rachel made space to change the narrative and offer insight into what retirement could look like for a millennial.   How many sources of income do you have?  We are taught that having a salaried full-time position equates to job security and income security. Rachel disagrees with that approach because you're completely dependent on a single source of income.  Much like we are advised to diversify our investment portfolio, Rachel also highlights the value of diversifying your income.  She shared at least 5 different sources of income she has and how that has shifted over the past few years. Passive Income is not a get rich quick scheme.  It’s front loading the work so later we do not have to trade time for dollars.  In addition to her book: Passive Income Aggressive Retirement, she also offered all of my listeners a free bonus.  Passive Income starter kit available at moneyhoneyrachel.com/bonus Spending 6m exploring the western United States had highlights and shadows.  While it was an amazing experience overall, the stress, cancellations and maintenance issues they had to work through with various Airbnb and VRBO rentals was extremely taxing.  Rachel indicated she is seeing a shift back to hotels for this reason.   When spending 6m traveling around the country you also don’t have a social life where you can go meet up with friends in the evenings. It was her and her husband together 24/7 for six months straight. So you gotta make sure you really do like your person that you're with. Traveling is hard on dogs.  While her dog Chloe adjusted after a couple months, having things like gates, lots of chew toys, and leaving them with some of their shirts helped ease the initial

    • 37 min
    051 | Tips for Gifting Experiences

    051 | Tips for Gifting Experiences

    With the holidays upon us and the media fraught with stories of supply chain issues and retailers bursting with consumerism, I thought I'd bring this episode out a little sooner than planned to help you navigate the holidays and share some perspectives, tips and stories of gifting experiences. 
    I also want pause and thank the many who reached out with kind words in celebrating our 1 year podcast birthday.  I even received a couple cups of coffee, which was splendid because I had a crafty weekend and woke up to snow on Sunday.  My kids were thrilled and scurried downstairs at 6:20 AM ready to go skiing in our backyard and were easily outside for several hours.  I on the other hand was inside being creative and hands down the one thing I reach for when being creative is a cup of warm flavored coffee.  I happen to have some Hawaii coffee left and it was the best moment of creative calm with inspiring aromas.  This cup was given by an anonymous buyer who shared:  “Love your outlook on life and adventure! I just started listening this year and now want an RV, hike the AT and who knows what else.”  Thank you to the someone who purchased it for me.  Can you see how that coffee led to an experience?  
    Worth noting, I have found that I really enjoy podcasting and having conversation without all the ads and interruptions many podcasters use.  If you enjoy the ideas, find joy or inspiration from my work, you can buy me a coffee to say thanks and support the show.  If you want to go deeper with the content and/or get more engaged you can find additional ways to engage through the links below.  
    Website for this episode: https://ordinarysherpa.com/051
    Subscribe to the email List:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/subscribe/
    Will you leave Written Review on Apple Podcasts:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/review/
    Designing Experiences
    One of the most transformative learning I have experienced in my life is that when I really want to solve a problem I need to start with empathy and allow feelings to have priority.  This skill is really helpful when designing experiences.

    1. Facilitating an Experience: Something to solve a problem or make the experience better.   
    2. The gift provides an experience: A memory making connection
    3. The ingredients of an experience
    4. The gift is part of an experience: the process of opening the gift is even part of the experience.  
    5. Reflection of an experience.
    NOTE: For the detailed items referenced in this episode check out the episode website: https://ordinarysherpa.com/051

    • 25 min
    050 | 1Yr Thank You Party and Ask a Sherpa Reveal

    050 | 1Yr Thank You Party and Ask a Sherpa Reveal

    One year ago I put out a trailer into the world with no idea what I was doing.  But I was excited.  Each step in this journey has been a daring adventure.  I want to use this episode to give you some of the behind the scenes at Ordinary Sherpa over the past year and also answer some of your questions.   
    “In the end, maybe it's wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.” -Elizabeth Gilbert
    Episode 50.  I missed 2 weeks of publishing.  
    I did not have any specific goals.  Instead I approached all the metrics and outputs purely from a curiosity lens.
    How long until I had my first episode with 100 downloads? How long would it take to have 100 people in my Facebook Group?  How long until I had 100 followers on Instagram?  How long until I had 100 email subscribers? How long would it take to make $100?  How long would it take to have Ordinary Sherpa downloaded in all 50 states?  How long until Ordinary Sherpa ranked in the top 200?  How long until I received 100 written reviews?   I also wanted to use this episode to dig deeper into the Sherpa philosophy.  I wanted this community to support other families on their adventures the way the Sherpa tribe supports Climbers on Everest.  A sherpa is often known as a guide.  Someone perhaps a few steps ahead of you on the trail.  They might not be the best of the best or the expert.  With that mindset I thought episode 50 was a great way to highlight Ask a Sherpa and highlight some of the questions raised and support offered through the community.
    What is your funniest travel story?      Do the kids like the RV or home better?   Do you ever get in touch with the state and local tourism boards and chamber of Commerce when planning a trip?  They sometimes speak of the off the beaten path adventures Is Instagram's power to introduce us to hidden gems good or bad?  How do you find balance between going to the top spot and dealing with crowds, or going to a less beautiful spot that is less crowded?   What podcasts inspired you?     What are some of your favorite camping recipes?  When are you launching your book?   What is next for Ordinary Sherpa? Worth noting, I have found that I really enjoy podcasting and having conversation without all the ads and interruptions many podcasters use.  If you enjoy the ideas, find joy or inspiration from my work, you can buy me a coffee to say thanks and support the show.  If you want to go deeper with the content and/or get more engaged you can find additional ways to support the show through the links below.  
    Website for this episode: https://ordinarysherpa.com/050
    Subscribe to the email List:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/subscribe/
    Join the Ordinary Sherpa Facebook Group to interact with other listeners.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/ordinarysherpa

    • 32 min
    049 | Becoming the Youngest AT Thru-Hiker with Josh & Cassie (Harvey) Sutton

    049 | Becoming the Youngest AT Thru-Hiker with Josh & Cassie (Harvey) Sutton

    Hello to Iceland and Denmark.  Ordinary Sherpa ranked in the top 200 in both countries.  Which is fun, because I have not been to Iceland, but glad to know that my podcast has. Maybe we can do a virtual meet-up and share a cup of coffee. I want to thank those who bought me coffee, who left written reviews, and took action to do something adventurous this week.  
     Will you leave Written Review on Apple Podcasts:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/review/
     
    The challenge last week in the everyday adventure challenge was Impossible.  What adventure is something that inspires you but feels impossible and we took various approaches to break that down into possibility.  Ironically Thru-Hiking the Appalachian trail is one of the things that seemed impossible to me.  I have researched the idea of hiking it.  Just to give some context for today’s episode here are some facts about the AT with a link to the source cited below.  The Appalachian trail is 2,200 miles, crosses 14 states and is the equivalent of climbing Mt. Everest 16 times.  The trail was created in 1937 but has been rebuilt over 90 times thanks to a crew of 241,936 volunteers in a given year.  On average hikers need to consume 5500 calories per day and most consume a ½ gallon of ice cream at the halfway point and typically go through 4-5 pairs of shoes.  
    Sometimes there are stories of families doing amazing things that virtually stop you in your tracks.  As I scrolled Instagram one day this summer I came across a family thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail.  I’ve had several friends who have hiked the AT, PCT, and Continental Divide.  I knew the amount of planning, grit and persistence required to make an adventure such as this come to life.  However I had never seen a 4 YO complete such a task.  Harvey Sutton is the youngest person to walk the 2,193.1 mile trail North from Georgia to Maine.  As many of my listeners have heard, I love to challenge the status quo and didn’t want to accept that my adventures needed to end when I became a mom.  The Sutton family immediately became a story of inspiration for me, regardless of the outcome.  I wanted to cheer them on and support them however I could. So today I am here with Harvey’s parents, Josh & Cassie Sutton to share their story of one amazing and inspiring adventure.  Giving them a new definition of success spending 7 months in the wilderness, appreciating their time together reaching an incredible summit.  Josh & Cassie I am so honored to have you, Welcome to Ordinary Sherpa.  
    Key Takeaways:  
    Josh Sutton swore he’d never hike the Appalachian trail after a long backpacking trip as a kid.  Adventure is not a “born with it trait.” While some people might be naturally more drawn to adventure it is usually because of an event or experience that nurtures that desire.  Both Cassie & Josh had parents with health issues who were not able to live the life they imagined.  When living the rat race of adult life, they read 4-hour work week by Tim Ferris which inspired the concept of mini-retirements. While the Everest Base Camp was a spontaneous trip, the Appalachian Trail was a 5 year planning process they worked toward.  The strategy they cited was “you make your mind up that you are going to do something is step 1.”   It’s interesting how people told them to cherish this time with their son, and yet when they shared how they were going to do that people balked at the idea.  You do not need to ask permission to adventure with your family.  This is your time, these are your memories, choose the path that you want to look back on without regret.   Physically they started training with Harvey around age 2 simply taking walks in the park and not carrying him. Slowly they built the habit of hiking 8-10 milers.  If there is a big adventure on your list, with training and the right mindset, it is achievable.   Fears and dangers can be overcome with some practice.  The Sutto

    • 40 min
    048 | So you think you want to RV? with Brent Dusek

    048 | So you think you want to RV? with Brent Dusek

    I want to start by saying thank you to those who left a written review.  I have two reviews this week:
    AJ_on_FIRE Adventure is out there.  A great addition for anyone seeking adventure from small acts at home to getting out in the world and exploring. Heidi and her guests share stories from their lives and their work that break down the barriers to adventuring, making it human and attainable. It was just what I needed to add more adventure into our family life. I look forward to learning more and collecting wonderful memories along the way. Thanks for the great content and inspiration, Heidi!
    G_Suarez Where was this show when my kids were younger?  The Ordinary Sherpa Podcast has been great listening to just for the wide variety of ideas the host Heidi and her guests provide for getting out of the house and exploring the world with your family and/or spouse.

    If you are finding value from the show, would you consider leaving a written review to help us reach 100 written reviews?  We’ll walk you through the process.  Will you leave Written Review on Apple Podcasts:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/review/
    Worth noting, I have found that I really enjoy podcasting and having conversation without all the ads and interruptions many podcasters use.  If you enjoy the ideas, find joy or inspiration from my work, you can buy me a coffee to say thanks and support the show.  If you want to go deeper with the content and/or get more engaged you can find additional ways to support the show through the links below.  
    Website for this episodehttps://ordinarysherpa.com/048
    Subscribe to the email List:  https://ordinarysherpa.com/subscribe/
    Join the Ordinary Sherpa Facebook Group to interact with other listeners.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/ordinarysherpa
    Key Takeaways
    Start small.  Our journey to owning an RV started with a cheap tent.  If that seems too adventurous, look at renting an RV or camper that feels like a better fit for your family.   Define your pain points.  While the allure of RV living can look luxurious, we wanted to keep the simple things at our focus.  A hard top to get out of the rain and off the ground was the only requirement when we rented our first pop-up.  Don’t underestimate the power of a wilderness experience.  While I thought our kids would need a break and booked a campsite mid-vacation with all the amenities, it turned out to be more annoying and less desirable places we stayed for free while boondocking.  Being bored in nature has allowed our kids creativity to shine and new forms of adventure to emerge.   Buying an RV is a big investment.  Treat it like buying a new house and have some tools and checklists to guide you through the buying process.  I should note, Mr. Dusek is working on an e-book to help you through RV life from planning, buying, maintenance processes.  We’ll announce that through our email list and FB group when it is published! Don’t let the fear of something uncomfortable hold you back from trying.  I never imagined sitting 12 feet up and looking semi drivers in the eye as I passed them on the highway.  It was much easier than I anticipated and this is coming from someone who doesn’t like to drive my husbands pick up truck.  We practiced just like learning to drive a car.   While many will consider our RV a depreciating asset, we see it as our vacation home on wheels that has opened many new doors we didn’t know were possible.  Stay tuned as we share where this takes us!

    • 57 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
82 Ratings

82 Ratings

Lilfletch ,

Perfect nudge to live (more adventurous) life

Thanks to all you do for parents and all. It’s so easy to drift through parenthood. Your podcast inspire me to live a more intentional adventurous life with the little mini meis.

RobbyBobby91 ,

Inspiration

As an empty nester approaching early retirement in a few years, Ordinary Sherpa is inspiring me to learn how to adventure.

Juliap0517 ,

Fun podcast

This podcast is a mini adventure in each listen. I love how Heidi dives into all the different topics. My daughter is only 1, but I get excited thinking about the fun trips we will be able to take together and this podcast gives me a ton of great ideas!

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