Traveling is a great way to relax and disconnect from the daily routine and stress, and exploring a destination by foot can help you get closer to its culture and people. But hiking is so much more. Not only does it give you the chance to see the natural beauty of every place you visit, but it can also teach you a lot about, endurance, motivation, and yourself.
Do you want to have a memorable adventure in the middle of nature? Continue reading this article, and find out what valuable life lessons you can learn from hiking.
Solitude seems scary, but it can also be exciting
Hiking can be enjoyed in many ways. You can indulge in a one-day trip or longer adventures, and you can gather a group of friends and get closer to nature together or choose a solo trip. Most people who want to find themselves prefer hiking alone.
Trekking will give you the chance to clear your head and find inspiration in the simplicity of your surroundings. It will also energize you, enhancing your ability to cope with life’s challenges. But the freedom of being by yourself without email notifications, social media updates, news, and expectations can be overwhelming. If solitude seems scary, don’t give up your solo hiking plans, because fear is normal, and it will easily become excitement while being on the trail.
Nothing meaningful is easy but perseverance pays
Whether we are talking about getting into the best universities, landing the best jobs, or raising kids, nothing meaningful comes easy. Following your dreams always comes with hard work and compromises, and it takes strength to overcome failures and disappointments.
A long hiking trail can be said to resemble life. It can bring easy walks but also more difficult climbs. To complete it, you’ll have to keep going, no matter how hard it might seem. Just put one foot in front of the other, and you will reach your destination. And once you do, you will understand that perseverance pays and there is nothing better than the great feeling of success.
Life isn’t a bed of roses, but when you see some, stop and smell them
Long hikes are demanding, and they might bring bruises, blisters, tiredness, and muscle pain. But every trail is also filled with mesmerizing landscapes, impressive wildlife, and all kinds of surprises only nature can offer. And these are the things you can’t miss, even when you feel tired and overwhelmed.
Last year I decided to have a solo adventure, exploring the Arran Coastal Way. It was the best trip until now, though my whole body hurt, I encountered unfortunate weather changes, and I got lost a few times, in the middle of nowhere. Why was it so great? Well, I had the rare opportunity to stay away from technology for a couple of weeks. And I saw so much beauty that I completely forgot about the difficult trail and the pain in my feet.
Slowing down and admiring the natural wonders on the trail wasn’t easy. And if you are used to living a hectic life, you will see how hard it is to “stop and smell the roses”. But once you relax and forget about your normal lifestyle, you can learn to enjoy yourself and everything around you.
When life gives you lemons, have a laugh
Slowing down, and stopping to smell the roses are not the only things you must do on the trail, no matter how difficult everything gets. You should also learn how to laugh when unexpected things happen.
As mentioned above, when I was exploring the Scottish Highlands, I encountered very unpleasant weather changes. In the beginning, I got frustrated and almost started crying, but then, I realized I couldn't let anything ruin my experience. So, I just put on my raincoat, and I continued walking. When I slipped and fell in the mud, I laughed at myself instead of getting angry. I realized that if I let the weather or any mishap change my attitude, I could end up not finishing my hike.
It was a valuable lesson for me. Now, whenever life throws you curveballs, I just laugh. It helps me let go of some negative emotions and empowers me to move on.
Sometimes taking risks brings life-changing moments
Paying attention to the marked trail is very important, especially when you hike by yourself. However, once in a while, you will see an unmarked narrow path that awakens your curiosity. Checking it out is a great idea since it might take you to something incredible, but if it doesn’t seem to go anywhere, you should abandon the new adventure and go back to your trail.
In other words, you should start your hiking adventure with an open mind and heart, and always be ready to venture off the beaten path. But, at the same time, you must always be cautious and take all the safety measures. This advice can be followed in real life, as well. Being open to taking risks and leaving the beaten path to try something new can sometimes give you the chance to experience life-changing moments.
Take one step at a time, but keep moving on
As you can see, life is a lot like a long and challenging trail. Slowing down, enjoying the journey, being courageous and taking risks, as well as overcoming the challenges with perseverance but also a smile on your face, are things you will learn while hiking.
And taking one step at a time might seem like a simple piece of hiking advice, but it is also something you can apply to your life because the results might be bigger than you expect.
Blog Post By : Rebecca Brown
Rebecca is a translator by day and a traveler mostly at night. She is an expert on living with jet lag – and packing in tiny suitcases. You can read more of her exploits at RoughDraft.