Busy, busy being creative..!

Monday 10 August 2015

Adventures keep you YOUNG!

Hi there!

Adventures come in all shapes and sizes and you don’t have to travel miles to get a taste for it and discover how taking yourself off on a little excursion benefits your daily life.

Small adventures are super duper important, if not more so than those BIG trips as these mini - or doorstep adventurers can fit in around your daily life.

Keeping your mind curious and inquisitive really does keep us young! As you’d expect with me helping you to rediscover your creativity and sense of adventure for a richer life, I’m here to encourage you to find the adventure in every day.

Benefits of exploring somewhere new

  1. It takes courage and you'll be stepping outside your comfort zone which means you'll have a opportunity to learn something new about yourself and your local area.
  2. If you change a behaviour this has an impact on your emotions and your thoughts. So you can change your current state of being. (e.g if you are feeling low - getting out and exploring will change that feeling and the thoughts associated with it.)
  3. Learning new things keeps the brain agile and fired up. Research shows that our brains are malleable and we can created new neural pathways.
  4. You'll be creating new memories and experiences which will impact on other areas of your life in a positive way e.g for me remembering the joy of cycling and sleeping better!
So far this August of Doorstep Adventures I’ve been to two of the three local lakes near to me. I started with these as I can either cycle or walk to them so they don’t involve a huge amount of planning to visit. A Key element of a Doorstep Adventure in my book!

Yes, I have had to get a permit as the lakes are owned by Bristol Water and co-managed by the Avon Wildlife Trust which did set me back £20. I was happy to pay this as this is my nearest stretch of water and I wished to be able to get as close to it as possible!

I’ve maps of each of the lakes I’ve visited so far – Blagdon and Chew Valley and have focused on exploring small parts of them at a time. I’ve met some fishermen and learned about ‘Pike as big as your bike’ seen where the trout are ‘grown’ and sat in a bird hide with binoculars watching what it is birds get up to. Swimming about mainly and eating so far!

I’ve noticed a few things since I’ve started to go. Especially the impact it's had on the other areas of my life

When I went in to the bird hide – I was a bit nervous at first as this was all new to me. Personally, this is part of the excitement of exploring a new place. I became completely focused on looking at what I could see through my binoculars. All thoughts about this and that, and oh heck I need to do this…went out of my mind once I started to focus on what I could see happening right in front of me. This is mindfulness in action. It was totally calming and made me feel as good as if I’d been meditating for hours! I've been more focused on work and tasks as a result.

I’ve no idea how long I was in that hide for as I was also watching the ‘lesser spotted fishermen’ in their boats out on the water and some of the birds hanging about hoping for a free meal. I think it was only for around 10-15 minutes.

Visiting these lakes has also reminded me how much I love being out on my bike and cycling. When I lived in Portsmouth I cycled everywhere! Since moving to Bristol though that changed, and now living in a small village finding routes that are a) cycle-able b) not too hilly and c) NOT frequented by big lorries and tractors has been a challenge, so discovering I could cycle all around (pretty much) the lakes traffic free (ish) is a real joy.

Each time I’ve cycled I’ve slept really well and had a sense of inner calm and joy. I also REALLY like the fact that I’ve been able to go through the gates that say ‘PERMIT HOLDERS ONLY’ for me it adds to the excitement and I can imagine I’m an intrepid explorer (which of course I am!!)

There is more exploring to do at these places and I’m grateful the permit it valid for a year. These adventures will carry on way past August that’s for sure. Next is to dig out my Moomin Flask and maybe see which shelter or hide I like the best and start to make that my very own ‘Artist’s Retreat. Well a shared one of course!

I do have a number of other places I’m going to visit this month including:

Folly Farm – I’ve discovered they have a Wellbeing Garden

Do you fancy visiting any of these places with me? That would be fun! If you can’t join me ‘in person’ I’ll be making some short films about what I discover which will be on my YouTube channel.

I’ve added some already from the lake adventurers so far. If you subscribe to the channel you’ll automatically get an update when a new video is added. 

What have you discovered so far and where will you go next?

5 Top Tips for Doorstep Adventures for Busy People!
  1. Decide the day before where you’ll go as then you are more likely to, well actually Go!
  2. Get your ‘Adventurers’ Bag’ packed the night before (water, notebook, camera, phone etc)
  3. Go mini e.g A different way home from work or if you normally eat at your desk – go out and search for a bench/outside space
  4. Take a friend. If you're not keen on solo exploring - ask a friend to go with you
  5. Remember to have FUN and be CURIOUS about what you see and discover!

Love to hear how you get on and what benefits you notice from going on some doorstep adventures!

Happy Adventuring!


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