Sometimes you need to leave your comfort zone, in order to grow and evolve.
Resilience is dealing with life’s challenges. The ability to deal with separation, exams, relationships, expectations. Taking steps towards resilience while hiking. The resilience they gain now will not only support them in day to day life but will help through to adulthood and the rest of their lives.
Resilience is important for managing your mental health, stress, anxiety. It does come easier to some and harder for others due to our genes, personality, past.
We often think that resilience is a self-journey. It is but getting there you don’t need to do it alone. Everyone needs resilience! Kids, teenagers, parents, grandparents, teachers, leaders.
The great thing about reaching for it together is celebrating the achievement together. By asking for help, participating in group activities that encourage stepping out of your comfort zone. Reaching for great heights.
Taking Steps Towards Resilience…
- Encourage and stimulate the building of supportive and healthy relationships
- Focus on independence and responsibility
- Encourage expression, self-reflection, and management of emotions
- Step out of your comfort zone, by creating opportunities to challenge ideas
On reflection of my hiking journey which began from personal grief in 2015 as a distraction. It then grew to a passion, a solo end-to-end in April 2016 of the 1000km Bibbulmun Track. To have a vision of guiding, consulting and mentoring others on their hiking journey in the form of a business.
The greatest gift hiking has given me was resilience. One step at a time, this joins me on every hike I guide or go solo.
During a youth hikeYouth Hikes, I encourage communication and connections with everyone, their peers, adults and other hikers on the track. Stopping to meet hikers who are completing their own 1000km end-to-end. Observing the clear distinction between doubt from someone just beginning, to someone only days away from completing the track and expressing the greatest expression of strength, endurance, fitness, self-esteem they have ever felt. We then sit down and discuss it.
“Together we motivate their doubt and celebrate their success”
I focus on building self-responsibility in each young person and offering them the opportunity for independence, by for example sleeping in their own tent, preparing their own meals, carry their own gear and self-managed solo or couples hiking.
I encourage the expression of emotions from the highs of reaching a campsite to the challenges of feeling exhaustion. Both the highs and lows receive the same opportunity to self-reflect, assessment, and management. A blister may hurt but it allows you to experience presence, responsibility, resilience and eventually healing.
I show them how to be present and observe everything. The smells, sights, touch, others, their gear, direction, barriers and most importantly themselves.
When you hike, you learn resilience in steps. Your destination 5 days away requires a different resilience to climbing a hill.
I found my first week of climbs during my end-to-end very challenging at the time in the rain and alone. During that first week, I didn’t see another person for 5 days. As an inexperienced multi-day hiker, this prepared me for many more days of being alone and a leg injury around day 14.
“Challenges build resilience, not a walk in the park”
If you require some support, please contact the Beyond Blue Support Service on 1300 224 636