Rumi said it best; “Everything in the universe is within you. Ask all from yourself.” The greatest joys in life come from within. Our experiences shape who we are yet, our internal state of happiness ultimately determines everything. It is up to you to be happy in the present moment whether you are standing in line at the grocery store or soaking in a wonderful hot spring. Tap into the infinite wisdom within and honor yourself. You do not need anyone else’s approval or validation, you have the power to set your own standards and be the ruler of your life.
Abandon preconceived notions of what you are supposed to do and be true to yourself. Authenticity does not lie in what others think of you, it lies in your holistic self- body, mind, and spirit. Get out there and chase your dreams.
I stay true to myself and honor myself by getting outside and exploring this wonderful world that we call home at least a few times a week. Adventuring into the wild and out of my comfort zone makes me a better, stronger person. Getting away from the hustle and bustle allows for a chance to look inward while absorbing the natural surroundings; soon you see that we are all one. In nature, you realize what is fundamentally important (love, survival, food, warmth, shelter, safety, etc.) and how simple life can actually be.
There’s something beautiful about leaving the busy world behind and packing everything you need on your back for an adventure. It is true freedom. A dose of outdoor adventure does wonders for the self and brings a sense of zen unlike any other.
We are all busy people juggling jobs, school, relationships, money, time, hobbies, family, etc. so it is super important to make time for yourself and for the outdoors. Nature is where we have those aha moments of pure bliss, happiness, and ecstasy. These moments carry over into our daily lives which inspire us, keep us going, and keep us grounded in reality. Inhaling fresh mountain air, basking in the warm sun, swimming in the salty sea, absorbing the negative ions of waterfalls, taking the next step on the trail, sweating in a difficult yoga pose- these are all fleeting moments. Here one second and gone the next.
We often rush through these precious moments in order to reach our goal or destination, and later on we wish that we would have been more present during our adventures. The value does not lie in reaching the summit or nailing a challenging trick or taking the coolest picture, the value lies in the journey to get there. Soak in every single moment of the journey and completely embrace your time spent in your happy place, you deserve it. Nourish yourself with the gift of time, fresh air, and sunshine. After frantically snapping pictures of that gorgeous sunset, take a moment to be fully present and see it through your own eyes.
You define your own adventures, no one else does. Your experiences are only authentic to you so make the most of your time and be there completely. There are endless ways to spend your time outdoors so spend it exactly as you want to. If you do not enjoy hiking, camping, or winter sports then try planting a garden, building a campfire, or simply enjoying a beverage in your backyard.
Outdoor adventure is one of the best ways to bring more zen into your life. It is great for physical and mental health while pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone is one of the most rewarding and empowering experiences.
Ways to add more adventure to your life:
1. Try something new! This is a great way to practice presence because you are entering the unknown. Routines and patterns form inevitably but it is important to venture outside of our comfort zone in order to grow! Make a bucket list. Get inspired by all there is to do in this world: snowshoeing, backpacking, rock climbing, yoga or meditation class, canoeing or kayaking, trail/mountain/beach/park you’ve never been to, new coffee shop or brewery, snowboarding or skiing, volunteering, photography, certification classes based on your interests, community events, etc. You never know, you may just end up with a new hobby!
2. Go on a solo adventure. Solo adventures are extremely underrated and can teach you a lot about yourself. When you’re alone in nature, you can truly experience everything around you within yourself, unadulterated. Adventure buddies are the best but going on a solo adventure once in a while helps to clear the mind and rejuvenate the soul. It is also a major confidence booster to know you can tackle an adventure all on your own. Whether you choose a solo day hike, plan a trip by yourself, or go on a walk by the creek alone; whatever this means to you, embrace it. Remember safety first, let someone know where and when you are going.
3. Meditate in nature. One of the best ways to center yourself is to meditate in an outdoor setting. Spending time in nature is healing to our bodies and our overstimulated minds. Meditation has endless benefits and I find that I gain more from it when I am able to breathe fresh air and be in nature. When you quiet your mind, you notice all the incredible nuances of the wild that you normally would ignore or not even notice. Pick a flat spot on a rock or a nice grassy area and get your zen on!
4. Plan an adventure. Planning is key. Half-baked plans do not always pan out well. If you want to make it happen you have to make time for it and figure out the logistics. You want to see an incredible waterfall? Get inspired, do some research in your area or in a destination area, find a friend who is interested in going, pick a date and time, pack everything you need, leave what you do not need, and hit the trail! It’s not always easy to make the time so that is why planning in advance is key (even months in advance). Use your time off wisely. You may have to sacrifice a weekend but time in nature is always time well spent!
5. Have fun! This is the number one priority. Getting outside is all about having fun! Place a high value on your own happiness and leisure time. Enjoy the simplicity of enjoying the moment!