Whether you’re experiencing a full-blown midlife crisis or have just fallen into a mind-numbing routine, everyone needs to do something crazy and thrilling every once in a while to get out of a rut. Sometimes, making your heart race with excitement and the right amount of fear is the best kind of medicine, literally.

Researchers have found that taking scary (but not life threatening) risks puts your body into survival mode, thereby producing more dopamine to put your into overdrive. This chemical gives us a satisfaction with ourselves and the choices that we’ve made. Here are five thrilling activities you can try to help you bust out of your doldrums and gain a different outlook on life.

Bungee Jumping

Always a classic among adrenaline junkies, bungee jumping is a great way to get the thrill of your life without putting yourself in danger. Few experiences can compare to free-falling several hundred feet before bouncing back up like a yo-yo, yet bungee jumping is actually one of the safest ‘extreme’ activities.

Wingsuit Flying

You’ve probably seen the videos of people leaping off cliffs and gliding in this flying-squirrel-like suits. An increasingly popular activity among thrill-seekers, wingsuits are as close as a human being can get to unassisted flight. If you’re brave enough to take the risk, it’s truly a one-of-a-kind experience.


Called ‘mushing’ by native Alaskans, dogsledding is a unique experience that has you racing across the tundra at high speeds behind a team of huskies. There are now several Alaskan businesses and programs that offer dogsledding experiences for first-timers, so look into it if you want to try an activity you’ll find few other places in the world.


Considered by many to be the ultimate adrenaline rush, skydiving is definitely not for the faint of heart. If you’re brave enough to try it, however, the good news is that skydiving isn’t actually as dangerous as most people believe. Despite the fact that you’re jumping out of a plane and falling thousands of feet to the ground, injuries or deaths from skydiving are rare. Your first time will be with a skydive instructor as a partner, which makes it a safe experience.

Whitewater Rafting

If you love the water, rafting down a high-speed river might be the perfect thrill ride for you. Whitewater rafting is often a daylong excursion that involves camping and hiking as well as the rafting itself, so it makes a great weekend vacation. Whitewater rafting is normally done in small groups, so it’s also a communal activity that gives you the chance to make new friends.

Taking risks and looking for change is a normal part of human living. However, just because you are craving some adventure doesn’t mean you need to take dangerous risks. Seek out safer options, like those listed above, that will still give you an adrenaline rush and give you a surge of energy to keep living life with a positive outlook.

Author's Bio: 

Anica is a professional content and copywriter who graduated from the University of San Francisco. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she's used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica on Twitter @AnicaOaks.