So I’ve been really enjoying this book, “The Genie Within.” It’s all about how to engage your sub-conscious mind to your greatest benefit. I have to admit that one of the reasons I really like this book is that it confirms for me so many of the thought-tricks I have used throughout my life.
For example, when I first started to learn how to actually swim for sport, I was 30, and a little past my prime. I couldn’t even swim from one end of the pool to the other. But I started to learn some drills. I read books. I watched videos. But the thing that helped me the most was visualizing swimming fast, efficiently, comfortably. I didn’t do this all of the time, but right before bed as my brain was slightly disconnected from my body, while I was in the “Alpha State.” It was effective enough that this morning I comfortably swam 1,400 meters (that’s almost a mile for you non-swimmers!).
What does this have to do with health and trails and whatnot that I typically write about? Well, I’ll tell you.
Frequently, I need to think. Like, THINK. Ideas need to be generated, worked out, designed, before they can be implemented. Sometimes, this thinking is just an emotional need – how to get through the mess my life feels it has become. I have discovered that if I turn off my sub-conscious mind and go into the “Alpha State,” these answers come. Easily and accurately. Comfortably.
And this is where the trail comes in. For some people, it happens in the shower. For some, it’s while meditating. For me, and many others like me addicted to the outdoors, this happens quickly and easily while on the trail. There’s just something about the smell of sage, juniper or pine. Something about the feeling of dirt beneath your feet or your wheels. Something about the sun, or the shade, or the wind. It strokes our primal brain and calms us, our retreat from this life that technology has built for us.
May I recommend the next time you are faced with a situation that seems insurmountable, and you need answers, go to that place. I recommend the outdoors. The Grand Valley has optimal access to about any trail you could want! Go there, and find it.