A Story About Life….and Packing
I’m about to pack for the next five months. How the hell does one pack for that?
I was beginning the process of breaking down a five month travel itinerary this morning when I had a sudden realization that planning this trip would turn any normal, sane person into a whirling dervish.
But then, in another instance, I realized it was all perspective. This is not my first packing job and I’ve had quite a “packing” journey in life. Oddly enough, this has all become quite “normal”.
What I mean is that fifteen years ago packing for a month would have been my limit of packing sanity. But I’ve been building on my packing knowledge for decades and now a multi-month, multi-sport jaunt is simply that, a jaunt. Every experience allows me to go further and stretch my limits.
You Didn’t Start Out An Expert
It’s true about anything new you try. A base jumper doesn’t start his base jumping career by putting on the bat suit and jumping off a cliff. My first scuba dive wasn’t with fifty sharks in a ripping current, it was in a swimming pool in three feet of water. Learning to parent is the same. You take it one step at a time with your kids, stumble a few times (okay probably many!), learn from your experiences and move forward.
Sometimes when we think about trying something new, we look at the end result and wonder how the hell we are going to get to that place rather than look at the small steps that inevitably will get us to that point down the road.
Here is what we believe. Not Knowing How to Do Something is NEVER a Reason Not To Do It. In fact, Sharkman and I believe it so strongly, it is one of our 8 principles for living adventurously.
I believe that this is what holds us back in life. While having a photo of Sir Edmund Hillary on the summit of Mt. Everest can be motivating if you want to stand on the top of the world, it can also be scary. Understanding that Sir Edmund didn’t cut his climbing teeth on Everest is necessary to realizing that you too can accomplish big things from small beginnings.
Yep, all of this came to me while I thought about packing. The logistics of this are a bit overwhelming. The plan involves packing for:
- Mountain biking, road biking, re-breather diving, snorkeling with whale sharks, teaching “adventure camp” to kids, and buying real estate.
- The travel includes driving across the country from Montana to N. Dakota, Michigan, Ohio and Florida (and back)
- In the middle of the domestic travel is a month long trip to Mexico.
…..so goes the life of the adventure couple.
So….how do I do this? How do I pack for this? How do I even begin to wrap my head around this process?
Like anything else, one step at a time. I’ve done all of these things before, basically, so it’s a matter of wrapping them together and taking small steps to reach the higher goal. So I look at each individual component of the trip and this makes it manageable. For example:
- Mountain biking- I’ve done this before. Be sure to pack bike, helmet, shoes, pump, patch kit, gloves, water bottle and biking clothes.
- Road biking- ditto, just add the road bike and be sure to have the locks/chains for securing the bikes while traveling.
- Driving across the country. Cooler and camping bag (I keep this complete in a duffel bag with tent/sleeping bags/headlamp/sleeping pads etc..)
All the while thinking about how much space we actually have in the vehicle. I’m packing one phase each day this week so it doesn’t become overwhelming the day before departure.
Where in your life are you overwhelmed with making the dream the reality? Where are you not “doing” because you have no idea where to start or what steps to take?
May we be so bold as to make a suggestion?
- Go to the homepage of our website and download the 8 Principles to Living Adventurously. Read it. Yep, you’ve gotta do that part to get anything out of it!
- Think about how far you want to go with your dream and then realize that you are going to take small steps to reach a big goal.
- Build on each step, like packing for a multi-month trip.
Sooner than you think, you’ll be packed up and on the road to success!