Your Tool Kit for Life’s Journey A Compassionate Kit Bag is a place to put reminders for your compassionate self, so you can use your resources to nourish you along life’s journey.
You can use any bag or box or other container. If you are feeling challenged by your journey, you have these self-nurturing items with you help you connect to your strength. Collect together items that are meaningful, or those you know will be helpful.
You might find these items inspiring, empowering, calming, soothing, motivating, bringing confidence, strength, calm composure and wisdom. Some items you might choose may have some sadness attached by their association with an event or person. You will need to decide if it is right to include this item.
If you physically cannot put the item in the bag or box, then perhaps use a reminder of the item, for example, a picture of an iPod, mp3 player.
You may have some items that you immediately know would fit in this compassionate kit bag. As a traveller you don’t want big items, choose a few important items that make you feel good about yourself perhaps they bring up a positive memory, or represent something that is important, inspiring, motivating or gives you a boost in some way.
A talking book, self help or calming mp3
Smells – oils, favourite perfume or a sachet of coffee
Reminder of compassionate image (self or other)
Book, poem, quotes
Letter or cards from family or friends
Objects with meaning
Hobby e.g. drawing, photography
Reminders of your strengths
Grounding or soothing objects – soft woolly socks or blanket, hand or foot lotion, massage oil, warm bubble bath, nail varnish, make-up, bracelet
Fruity snack or treat
Keep your compassionate kit bag nearby, maybe next to your bed to remind yourself every day how strong and loved you are. It will help you ground yourself and connect with your inner strength. You will bounce back up and feel empowered.
My friend doesn’t do ‘outdoors’, she likes to sleep in five-star hotels. “Why would you give up the comfort and the warmth of a nice bed to be outside?” she asks me. To be honest if you’ve never done it then, you won’t know. Wild camping isn’t for everyone. It is for those of us that like to feel free, alive and the vastness of the world. Wild camping allows you to connect – connect with yourself and the world on a deep level. The distractions and nonsense have been stripped away, no tv, no hair dryer, no smart phones (if you’re somewhere without a signal). It’s back to just you and nature.
Wild camping with friends is special, you don’t have to be alone. Finding like-minded individuals that enjoy nature and the inner glow you get when you’re a self-reliant team, means you can share your adventures. Stepping off the rat-race, away from the media, the noise and back to the calm of nature. You can slow down from the hub-bub of life. Leave the challenges and step back into the very simplicity of existence – finding or making a shelter, making food and keeping warm. What you choose to use to fulfil these basics will depend on where you go and the conditions. In the UK we have lush green countryside, which denotes the fact that we often need a waterproof shelter.
After cooking a simple meal on my stove out of the wind, at Cow Green Reservoir I stepped outside into the darkness. There’s no light pollution, not a house or street light for miles, just the darkness that wraps you in her blanket. Venus and Mars glowed large and pink, low in the sky near the horizon. When I looked up I could see the Milky Way. The stars were in three dimensions. The big familiar constellations we often see in the sky, vast numbers of medium-sized stars and everywhere millions and millions of tiny stars that you never usually see, making the night sky into clouds of tiny twinkling stars. This view was sublime, its complexity was awe-inspiring. Our little worries and grumbles disappear as our brains try to comprehend the scale and magnitude of our universe and comprehend our emotions as we investigate infinity. Nature puts things in perspective, we feel small and our problems feel small. Wild camping moments like these are why I go. I feel part of something bigger than myself that is infinitely beautiful. Quiet time for contemplation is so important. It helps me listen to who I am and find my way in this complex world.
If you like being outdoors, enjoy being independent and you’ve been camping at a campsite before, then make a small step and go camping without showers and the toilet. There’s a leave no trace principle, so take all litter home, yours and anyone else’s. Follow the rules and camp where it’s legal. The rewards are huge, you feel better, calmer and more relaxed. You’ll also be able to relax and enjoy some of the best views at sunrise and sunset. Do you want to feel truly free? Is it time for you to Go Wild? Ideas and advice can be found on the Wild Camping UK .
If you already go wild camping leave a comment and share why you love it.
My lesson learned? It really is never too late! We tell ourselves this but do we listen? Well, 20 years after my last motorcycle (pillion) camping trip to Scotland, I finally got there again. Nerves? Loads! But planning, and trust in my driver, added to a spectacular semi wild location for our pitch, woke up my wanderlust all over again – so tiny tent and sleeping mat, prepare to be over used in the 2nd half as 50 and beyond will see me off the beaten track, & under canvas as often as possible.