Lessons from the trail

I am fortunate enough to live in Colorado and spend time outside in the wilderness. What I love about back packing is my physical body gets challenged and my brain has to stay focused on the current situation.  A day on the trail is an experience in gratitude where I can embrace the sounds, smells and beauty of nature. This practice of being mentally in the moment is not that easy to accomplish in a busy hectic world of multi- tasking and ongoing interruptions.

Here are some lessons from my exploration of a passion that took me  step by step over parts of the Continental Divide Trail last month.

  • Self care is critical to your overall enjoyment  of the day
  • Self awareness  and immediate action  based on your needs will prevent exhaustion
  • You could miss the whole experience if you are too focused on the end result
  • You need food, sleep and good energy to tackle the tough challenges ahead
  • There is a mental freedom in doing the thing you most want to do for yourself
  • Preparation and planning are part of the process
  • You are the expert in taking care of your own needs- don’t let others tell you differently
  • Confidence comes from small steps of daily accomplishments
  • Ask for help and support when you have big projects
  • Be flexible in your goals
  • Celebrate what you achieve every day

My biggest lesson was in the power of monitoring my emotional, physical needs on a regular basis over many days. When you walk into the wilderness your safety depends on your physical ability to travel the distance and be mentally able to make smart decisions based on your environment. How does that translate into self care in a busy hectic world? Try asking yourself these questions every hour for one full day.

How am I feeling? What do I need? Then what actions can you take to get what you need for self care today? When you hit a big challenge- slow down and breath. It only takes a moment – yet that breathing exercise will allow you to keep focused on your path.

If you get exhausted by the end of a day-what do you need to do differently to end the day feeling satisfied and accomplished? I would invite you to spend time doing what you are passionate about. Allow yourself to fully embrace that activity. Enjoy the feelings that you experience in your own daily adventure. If you are struggling with your current path: ask me about coaching and how that could make your travels easier. Contact me for a strategy session on how to make your path simpler.