I camped out quite a bit growing up and reconnected to camping this last year. I loved it as a kid, but I think that I appreciate it even more as an adult. Camping is an activity that can truly add value to your leadership journey and can help you make a significant adjustment in your stress levels.
Camping pulls you out of your normal routine
Routines can be a good thing. In fact, we recommend them, especially in the morning. (PTB #237) It’s also healthy to break out of your routines from time to otherwise you can become stale, complacent, and become stuck in rut without even realizing it.
Camping likely changes everything when it comes to your normal routine. You’ll be outside more, and you rely on technology less. Camping is also a chance to build lasting memories because of just how different the experience is from your normal day-to-day activities. We talk in Ep 244 that our desire for more time can really just be a desire to create more lasting meaning and memories. Camping is certainly one of those activities where you are guaranteed to create lasting memories for yourself and anyone that you bring along with you on the adventure.
Camping eliminates the noise and distractions
Emails, phone calls, meetings, more emails, to-do lists, even more emails! Your work, school, and home life are constantly pulling at you for your attention.
We get so covered up in the noise and distractions of our lives that we become numb to it. I know the power that camping has to eliminate the stress and noise but I usually fail to appreciate its value until I go back out again. Meetings, emails, and the stress of life simply don’t matter out in nature. The only thing that does matter is the moment that you are in when you are there. Head out to the wild when you need an impactful escape from the stress in your life.
Camping gives you a fresh perspective
We’ve talked at length about how exercise can help clear your mind and give you a chance to innovate and be creative. Camping offers many of the same benefits here. With the earlier advantages mentioned above, you become freer to focus on other things.
Slow down and appreciate nature, your surrounding, and the life that is happening all around you. In scouts, we teach that part of being reverent is taking time to appreciate these types of things that we miss in the busyness of our normal day.
Camping a great time to take stock of your mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual health, to be creative, and to reflect and be thankful for the things you have in your life.
Camping helps your planning skills
You may think that the idea of camping is all well and good, but the thought of it is overwhelming. Where do I go? What do I bring? How am I going to eat? All fair questions. Let me encourage you that there are many different levels of camping from car camping, to off-the-grid backpacking trips. Regardless of the level you choose, each type of trip takes some level of planning.
Preparing for a trip is much like planning for a vacation. You should slow down, think through the different scenarios that you may face, plan for the weather, and build in a backup plan or two.
Camping can be equal parts planning and learning moments. There hasn’t been a time that I have come back from a camping trip, either learning how to do a process better, prepare better for the unknown, or learned from a mistake that I made.
Get out there and enjoy a camping trip, whether that is in a cabin in the mountain’s valley or a tent in a secluded part of the forest. You’ll reap the benefits of breaking away from the stress of life and come out with a deeper appreciation for yourself, nature, and others.
Make a better tomorrow.