A to Z Guide to Thriving in Life Health & Wellness

‘Z’ is for Zest – Rediscovering the passion in life

April 30, 2018
Zest - rediscovering passion in life

Zest is such a fun word. When I hear or read the word, I think of vibrancy and a ‘get up and go attitude’. A feeling of being alive.  I looked up the definition and

Zest means: 

‘enthusiasm, eagerness, energy and interest’

It can also mean ‘the outer coloured part of citrus fruit used for flavouring.

Living a life with Zest means we are thriving and enjoying being alive.  The British philosopher, Bertrand Russel, said “What hunger is in relation to food, zest is in relation to life”  and suggested that having a zest for life is the mark of a happy person.

Do you have a zest for life?  Are you someone who jumps in boots and all with verve and enthusiasm?

What does having a Zest for Life mean?

Having a zest for life doesn’t mean that we have to be scaling mountains or jumping out of planes or even bungy jumping.  It simply means feeling alive and having an appetite to experience life.  We all have a natural zest for life and we only have to look at children to see and feel their enthusiasm for new experiences and having fun.

Unfortunately, as we go through life and get caught up with responsibilities, perhaps illness or just learning to cope with our hectic lifestyle, we lose our zest.  We start living in a rut which we can’t seem to break free of.

If we are tired or not taking care of our health and well-being, then of course our enthusiasm lags and we just don’t feel like doing anything.  We certainly don’t feel passionate about anything other than just making it through the day.

Rediscovering your Zest for Life

The good news is that we can take steps to rediscover our zest for life.  Don’t be defined by age because anyone can rediscover their passion for life as long as they have the right attitude.

Take microadventures

Alistair Humphreys is an adventurer, author and National Geographic Adventurer of the Year in 2012.  He writes that microadventures are any sort of adventure that is “short, simple, local, cheap – yet still fun, exciting, challenging, refreshing and rewarding.”  This could be in your own backyard, there is no need to travel to the other side of the world.

Learning to play again

As children we had no trouble being carefree or playing.  I love spending time with my grandson because he teaches me how to play and have fun.  Just because we are adults, doesn’t mean that we have to discard playtime.

Living a healthy lifestyle

To have a zest for life means you need energy.  To be sparking on all cylinders you need to live a healthy lifestyle.  This means:

  • making healthier food choices,
  • having some daily movement of up to 30 minutes doing some form of activity that you love
  • making time each day for meditation or reflection
  • having regular check ups

Stepping out of your comfort zone

Sometimes excitement comes from doing something you haven’t done before.  It doesn’t mean that you have to be a daredevil. It just means doing something that might stretch your comfort level.  Even walking a different route to what you normally do can change your comfort zone.

Accepting that life can sometimes give you lemons

Zest is also the peel of the citrus fruit used for flavouring and sometimes life can throw us lemons (or curve balls), which give us a bitter taste.  It is what we do when we are faced with problems or the bitter parts of life that matters.

Some people will make lemonade, some will grab tequila and salt. 

Life isn’t always fun and we can’t always be upbeat, vital and energetic.  Accepting this and having the right attitude will make you stronger, more resilient and more capable of overcoming the bad times to enjoy the good.

What are some ways you rediscover your Zest and passion for life?

Zest - Rediscovering the passion in life

We have reached ‘Z’ and that means the end of the ‘Blogging AtoZ Challenge’ for April.  I do hope you have enjoyed my AtoZ Guide to Thriving in Life.  I know that I have learned so much writing the posts and have reinforced the idea of thriving in my own mind.

If you have missed previous posts in the AtoZ Challenge 2018 just click here to find them all.

You might also like to check out my Over 50 & Thriving series.  In this series, published every Thursday, guest writers give insight into what ‘Over 50 & Thriving’ means to them.

Want practical and motivational ways to learn to Thrive rather than just Survive in life?  Click here and Subscribe to receive my daily posts as they publish plus a FREE COPY of my E-Book ’10 Ways you can start Thriving Today’.

Let’s Start Thriving Today!

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52 Comments

  • Reply karen@profoundjourney.com April 30, 2018 at 08:34

    I just love the word ‘zest’. It’s one of those words that is fun to say and that perfectly represents its definition. I can’t offhand remember what that kind of word is called.

    When my energy is good, I definitely feel a zest for life. When it isn’t, I know that stepping up the healthy lifestyle including more time outdoors, more sleep, and less sugar are the things I need to start feeling zestful again.

    Thanks for a wonderful series, Sue. It has been a pleasure reading your posts.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 13:17

      I love that word too Karen it is full of fun and enthusiasm. I am honoured that you enjoyed my posts and it has been wonderful getting to know you throughout the challenge. I have subscribed to your blog so I don’t miss any posts in the future. Have a great week!

  • Reply trishafaye April 30, 2018 at 09:10

    I like how you include actionable steps in your posts – things we can do to actually implement what you’re talking about and incorporate the principles into our daily lives.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 13:18

      Sometimes we just need some guidance and I find writing actionable steps is a great reminder for myself.

  • Reply Jennifer Jones April 30, 2018 at 10:20

    I love the word Zest Sue. As soon as I hear it I think of enthusiasm and energy. I love the quote from Bertrand Russell – What hunger is in relation to food, zest is in relation to life. That is so true.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 13:20

      Yes that is how I feel about the word Jen – fun, enthusiasm and energy!

  • Reply Sue April 30, 2018 at 11:01

    Based on your past posts, I thought you might pick “zest” for today Sue! It’s a word that always makes me laugh, though, because my stepson loves “zesty lemon cake” and whenever there’s cake to be had that’s his first question!! But jokes aside, I find one of the things that saps my “zest” so quickly is definitely my health – not enough sleep, not enough exercise, fewer healthy food options, not enough sunshine. So after a healthy breakfast I’m off out into the sunshine to get some exercise right now!!
    Thanks for sharing your tips xx

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 13:23

      Hi Sue! It was either Zest or Zeal but I think Zest just makes you feel upbeat and positive and ready to go. I love zesty lemon cake as well! have a great day and it looks like you have started it the perfect way. x

  • Reply mommyhon333 April 30, 2018 at 11:37

    Sweet Sue, you did it!! From A-Z with wonderful content. This post might just be my favorite. I hope that we both continue to find ways to add zest to life. As that Jenny Perry quote so wisely states, there is something to be said for the lemons life hands us. They truly make us appreciate the sweeter days. Bravo for a job well done!!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 13:24

      Thanks so much Leslie, I’ve made AtoZ my Stepping out of my comfort zone topic for your link up. We will always be sizzling and adding zest to our lives. Have a great week!

  • Reply Debbie Harris April 30, 2018 at 18:02

    Yay!! Your last day of A-Z challenge and what a great word to finish with. I believe I have a zest for life. Curiosity and an interest in the world around us is a part of that. It can come and go at times but zest is an important part of life otherwise what is there? Well done Sue on a great month.x

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 18:50

      Yes I love the word Zest it is a big like Vim and vigour isn’t it? It just makes you feel enthusiastic. Yes you certainly live your life with zest and passion, Deb. Yay my challenge is finished now I can take a breath! 🙂

  • Reply Miriam April 30, 2018 at 18:51

    What a great word. I’m a big fan of micro adventures and I’m also a tequila and salt kind of girl. Unfortunately right now I’ve been hit with a doozy of a head cold so it’s straight lemon and honey for me. Can’t wait to get my energy and ‘zest’ back. ? xo

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 18:57

      Oh you poor thing. Hubby and I have both had head colds over the last couple of weeks. He gave it to me! Take care and I’m sure you will have your zest back soon. Just take care of you and listen to your body. xx

      • Reply Miriam April 30, 2018 at 19:15

        I will, thanks Sue. Hub’s taking good care of me and cooked dinner tonight and my bed is now beckoning. Thanks again for your good wishes. xx

        • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 19:16

          You have a good man. No off to bed and rest. xx

          • Miriam April 30, 2018 at 19:18

            I do indeed. And yes, it’ll shortly be a transition from couch to bed. ? xx

  • Reply Leanne April 30, 2018 at 21:13

    I love the idea of being zesty Sue – I like to think I still have a Zest for life – and when it starts to wane I know it’s time to up the ante and find something new to kickstart things again. Congrats on reaching the end of the Challenge – I’m so glad you joined me for the long and arduous journey 🙂 xx

    Leanne | http://www.crestingthehill.com.au
    Z for Zero in on your target

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 30, 2018 at 21:18

      Yes ‘zest’ or ‘zesty’ is a great word and I agree we are the type of people that if we start fizzling we find something that will help us to start sizzling again. 🙂 Thanks for encouraging me to do the challenge. I really think it was our best work to date. xx

  • Reply Ally Bean April 30, 2018 at 21:27

    Zest is a great word and good way to end your A To Z Challenge adventure. Did doing this challenge reinforce your zest for life? Inquiring minds want to know.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 1, 2018 at 01:58

      I love the word Zest, Ally and yes doing the challenge did reinforce many things. Each post I wrote reminded me of the message I was giving and reinforced the concept of Thriving in Life xx

  • Reply Weekends in Maine April 30, 2018 at 22:05

    We’re about to have two in college so no big trips for us in the near future but I’m already lining up microadventures. I think they’re a great way to encourage a zest for life and experience fun, new things in your own backyard. Karen at Weekends In Maine

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 1, 2018 at 01:50

      Yes I think microadventures sound like fun so I’ll be incorporating them for sure. We are going on a cruise around Japan in October so looking forward to that. Thanks so much Karen for supporting my AtoZ Challenge and it is great to connect with you. xx

  • Reply Melanie Crouse April 30, 2018 at 22:39

    I love this so much! What a perfect ending to your A-Z challenge. I love the word zest and the idea of microadventures. Good luck with your next adventures. Melanie’s Stories

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 1, 2018 at 01:48

      Thanks for stopping by to comment Melanie and I’m so pleased you enjoyed the post. I love the word zest because it just makes you want to jump up and down. Yes, after AtoZ now what??? Have a great day. x

  • Reply patwdoyle11 May 1, 2018 at 00:00

    A wonderful end to your A to Z and a great series! I found so many of your posts inspiring me to SOAR (my word of the year) and this one ends it wonderfully. I’ve recently re-started healthy cooking, so the lemon zest was very relevant! And the micro-adventures (we did 2 this weekend). Thanks for being one of my personal cheerleaders (didn’t know you were one, did you!).

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 1, 2018 at 01:45

      Well you have made my day Pat! I’m so pleased you enjoyed the series and found some inspiration. I’ll be your cheerleader any day! x

  • Reply Terri Webster Schrandt May 1, 2018 at 05:14

    Your zesty post was lovely to read, Sue, and I love reading your enthusiasm for fitness and leisure! When I was a kid we used Zest soap in the bath, so I giggle every time I see the word. Congrats on finishing the A-Z challenge with a bang!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 06:45

      Hi Terri, and thanks for your lovely comments. Zest just sums up enthusiasm and fun for me Terri, and I’m glad you had a giggle because of your childhood memories about Zest soap. It was a challenge definitely but as I got into it I was enjoying myself actually. Now to come back to earth as the pressure is no longer on. Have a great day!

  • Reply Retirement Reflections May 1, 2018 at 08:36

    Hi, Sue – Thank you so much for providing this series for us. Your hard work and efforts have truly paid off. I (and many others) have learned a great deal.
    I love the idea of “microadventures” and “adult playtime” (no, not x-rated)! In fact, I will now often say to retired friends “when can you come out and play?” It really helps to shake things up and keep things fun.
    Enjoy a well-deserved break! I look forward to continue following your thoughts and wisdom.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 06:43

      Yes I love the idea of ‘microadventures’ Donna and yes I know what you mean with ‘adult playtime’ Thank you as always for your continuing support and encouragement. Have a great week! xx

  • Reply Denyse Whelan May 1, 2018 at 09:48

    Congratulations on concluding your A-Z challenge. Zest is a great word! I love(d) making lemon syrup cakes where you add lemon zest to the mix. My late mum used to grate orange zest over the icing on her much loved orange cakes. I like to think I have a zest for life and I do not feel at all silly playing these days. Life IS too short!!
    Thank you for linking up for #lifethisweek 18/52. Next week’s optional prompt is “The A-L of Me”. Denyse

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 06:35

      Hi Denyse, yes I love Zest as a word. It just makes you want to get up and jump about really. Although you have been through a very, very tough time, it has certainly helped you realise about life and making the most of it. Have a great week Denyse. I love your topic for next week.

  • Reply Victoria May 1, 2018 at 10:16

    Now that the weather is finally getting decent I am feeling more of a zest for life. The cold dreary months were hard and I was a little lost but things are looking up.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 06:34

      Oh that is great to hear Victoria. It is amazing how the weather can affect us and now you are heading towards Summer, I’m sure you will be feeling much more enthusiastic and feeling good. xx

  • Reply Deborah Weber May 1, 2018 at 10:50

    To end this challenge with Zest makes me smile. Today as I was cutting a lemon I took a moment to really savor the oils in the peel. Energizing, refreshing, and the perfect antidote to the attention fatigue April’s month-long challenge can bring. Congratulations on completing the challenge and inspiring us through the alphabet.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 06:30

      Hi Deborah and thanks for visiting to leave a comment. How great that you really savored the oils and smell of lemons. They are so fresh and envigorating and zest is a perfect word for me to view life. Have a great week! xx

  • Reply Clearissa Coward May 1, 2018 at 23:57

    Zest is a fun word and this is an awesome post. It made me stop and think…am I living with zest or just muddling through? Thank you for sharing . #TheBloggingrandmothersLinkParty

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 06:21

      Hi Clearissa thanks for the comment and I hope you are living with zest! I’m sure you are. Thanks for co-hosting the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty and have a great week!

  • Reply Sylvia Lance May 2, 2018 at 02:59

    Just discovering your blog with your “Zest” post and I loved it! I also downloaded your Thriving Ebook and found it very interesting and engaging. I took notes, and used it right away to assist in my new “thriving” process. Thanks for sharing your blog with us.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 06:20

      Hi Sylvia welcome to my blog and I’m so pleased you found the Thriving Ebook useful. I’m glad to have you as part of the Sizzlers! If you are on Facebook you might want to join my Facebook Group, for fun and conversation. Have a great day and lovely to meet you x

  • Reply Candi Randolph May 2, 2018 at 07:53

    Loved reading your posts this month, and ‘Z’ is no exception! Whether it’s the active, fun part of our zest for life or how we deal with the bitter curve balls, we have the power to control how we react and learn from them. Thanks for a wonderful series!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 09:27

      Thanks so much Candi and I’m very happy you enjoyed the series. There might be a book coming now 🙂

  • Reply Pat --Mille Fiori Favoriti May 2, 2018 at 13:10

    I love the word “zest’; to describe the love of life! I went in for an annual physical today and my doctor made me fill in a “feelings” graph about how I felt most days. Happily I feel good almost always, but I was happy to see this type of depression screening being done now. Mental health is often overlooked in both the young and the elderly. It makes a big difference to get help when needed. I love your blog but can I make one suggestion for you to consider? Your light grey print is very hard to read when one’s eyes are not the best. I watch a grandchild all day and don’t get online till late evening and my eyes are so tired I strain to see any print that is light on white background. I often give up and move on. Maybe others have the same problem? Just a suggestion–thanks for listening!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 14:36

      Hi Pat! Thanks for visiting and yes I will change the print colour – thank you for your suggestion. Your doctor is up to the minute in including depression screening in an annual check up. This is just as important as physcial health. In fact, I’ve just published a post, May is Mental Health Month in the US so putting the spotlight on mental health is something I’m passionate about as my husband has PTSD. Thanks again for the feedback and I’m off to change my colour x

  • Reply G Angela David May 5, 2018 at 18:20

    Thank you for sharing an energetic post; I can relate to what you are saying- travel, explore places, continue learning, have fun, take care of your health and live a life of purpose and live with gratitude…

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 6, 2018 at 11:22

      Thank you! I think Zest just sound energetic doesn’t it! Have a great weekend and thanks for the comment x

  • Reply Pat --Mille Fiori Favoriti May 23, 2018 at 12:55

    Thanks, Sue for commenting on Grandma Dee’s blogging series “Blogging Grandmothers” about e and my blog. I’m so happy you changed your blog type to a darker color too!–it is much easier to read now and I’m grateful. My eye doctor keeps telling me my eyes are great –he did cataract surgery on my eyes two years ago–but I see a big difference as I’m getting older.

    I’m going to add that having an Italian husband certainly adds “zest” to life! We are both fortunate to have one!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 23, 2018 at 16:21

      Hi Pat! It took me a little while to figure out how to make the changes but I’m glad you are finding it easier to read my blog posts now. Yes Italian husbands do add ‘zest’ to life don’t they? Have a great week! xx

  • Reply JEN Garrett May 27, 2018 at 01:44

    I love the word Zest! but I have to admit my first thought was a commercial jingle from the brand of soap.

    Earworms aside, keeping that enthusiasm for life is so important no matter what phase you find yourself in. I love finding the fun, the zany, and yes even the challenging bits that give life its tangy flavor.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 28, 2018 at 13:45

      Hi Jen! You are the second person to have mentioned the soap jingle LOL:) I don’t think we had that one in Australia. Thanks so much for stopping by to visit and comment. Have a great day!

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