I often get caught up in the mundane life. Sitting in a cubical, churning out reports, answering emails, writing letters, answering phones, buying things, paying bills, ugh!!! I NEED A VACATION!
Vacations cost money, and this can cause stress that takes away from the enjoyment. When vacationing in a city, its easy to stay stuck in the office mindset and never fully disconnect. Backpacking trips are where I find myself coming back more centered and refreshed. Here are the 5 reasons I think your next vacation should be a backpacking trip
1. Reconnect with Nature
I tend to take social comforts for granted. By getting out on a trail carrying my only possessions on my back, I find myself reflecting inward on my actual needs vs. desires. My existence in the corporate world often leaves me perpetually wanting and seeking more. This mindset makes me forget to pause and be grateful for what’s presently part of my life.
On the trail, my only needs are food, water, and shelter. When successfully planned, all those things are provided for me. When I keep putting one foot in front of the other, the trail provides so much more. It could be watching the birds at the break of dawn, a cool breeze in the warm afternoon sun, or breathtaking views after a grueling climb. Nature’s simplistic beauty becomes a precious, priceless commodity.
2. Disconnect from the digital world
Peeling our eyes from the screen isn’t easy to do. I’m always looking for power supplies at airports, coffee shops, and restaurants when traveling. In my eagerness to post about my trip, I am often not present in the experience.
Electricity is not commonplace on the trail. The electronics on hand are reserved for emergencies. So instead of checking social media, I find myself engaged with the trail and with my thoughts. My breath comes with purpose as the ground moves slowly under my feet.
3. Slow Down your Mind, Body, and Soul
Pop culture has glorified and made romance of the fast paced modern world. At times I agree, a hurried pace is something I value on my commute between the office and home. But shouldn’t life be a little more about the journey than the destination? The end of life is not something I’m in any rush to get to but I often forget to stop and enjoy the ride I’m on.
The trail provides opportunities to slow down. We get to move at a more natural human pace instead of the mile-a-minute pace we’ve grown accustomed to. When stopping to catch my breath, filter water, or eat some trail mix, I find my attention and focus is much more vivid. The way the trees sway in the wind, and butterflies flutter by, and the rushing sound of a nearby stream, all seem louder and more present when I take time to pause.
4. Personal Growth / Reflection
Aside from slowing down, backpacking provides opportunity to push myself out of my comfort zones. By putting creature comforts aside, and putting a heavy pack on my back, I physically and psychologically exert myself.
As the miles of trail crawl by, I become a stronger person. The pressures of life back home seem less heavy as I become grounded by nature. Realigning with my natural needs allows me to have gratitude for my present place. I recognize how lucky I am to have food, water, health and shelter.
5. Cost Effective
The best part of hiking is time on trail is typically free. No hotel is needed. All I need is my backpack, shelter, food and water. The trail provides the experience. After driving to the trailhead, commercial needs vanish.
By disconnecting with the material world, I reconnect with my natural instincts. It’s hard to put a price on this sort of freedom, and its even harder to leave behind on the trail.
So there you have it. Save money, and become human again as you get lost finding your natural self away from it all. Let go and Get out there! Happy Hiking!
I often get caught up in the mundane life. Sitting in a cubical, churning out reports, answering emails, writing letters, answering phones, buying things, paying bills, ugh!!! I NEED A VACATION! Vacations cost money, and this can cause stress that takes away from the enjoyment. When vacationing in a city, its easy to stay stuck in the office mindset and…