Embarking on a road trip means embracing change. Whether you’re taking off for a weekend overlanding trip or taking off for good, you’re going to want a mindset as fluid and dynamic as the road you’re driving. One practice to help you create that mindset is meditation. A whole host of meditation traditions have taken root in the West, and while some incorporate mantras and chanting, other forms, often described as mindfulness, work simply with breath and sensation. While you may think meditation isn’t for you, it doesn’t hurt to try new things, right? Here are a few ways meditation could enhance your next car camping adventure:
Getting away might be the first step, but arriving is just as important. Upon arrival, you’ll want to make sure you’re on your A-game to fully take in your surroundings. Think about the surreal panorama of that sunset over the mountains, the deep calm water of that glossy lake, the sweet aroma of your car as you finish your second bag of Doritos...
If you’re still thinking about emails, bills, and other loose ends, then you might as well be back in your living room instead of sleeping in a Subaru Outback. Meditation grounds you in the now and keeps you absorbed in your experience, so you can enjoy it the way nature intended.
Trips rarely go as planned, and it’d be boring if they did. Whatever it may be, you’ve still got to navigate the twists and turns with a cool head to make the best of your situation. Meditation helps you build that skill.
If you miss a few turns, or that 6% chance of rain becomes 98%, you’re going to want to keep calm and recalibrate. Return to your breath. Return to your body. Return to your situation, and find the silver lining.
If you’re away from your car and can’t find shelter in the rain, why not enjoy a frolic and a free shower?
Being Better Company
Traveling as a pair or as a band of nomads can be tricky. You might get irritated at Jessica for always calling shotgun or at Mike’s motormouth during a long stretch of highway. Mindfulness meditation can help you stay level headed during these inevitable travel moments.
Being mindful means being patient with people and tapping into more sympathetic habits of mind. Whether you’re easily irked or tirelessly irksome, meditation is one way to help you become attuned to your fellow travelers and make every car camping trip a smoother ride.
It’s a well-accepted fact that contemplative practices like meditation relieve stress, and yet it's easily overlooked. This might be the biggest reason to start meditating as a traveler.
I think we can all agree that at some point during our travels, taking to the road is a means to simplify our life. Meditation goes hand in hand with that philosophy. Even the hardiest travelers need to unwind; it’s human nature.
Improving Your Health
Meditation improves memory and focus and even alleviates physical conditions like high blood pressure. It also strengthens your immune system.
To have more robust adventures, with more climbing and hiking and general escapades, make sure you have the best self-healing practices. Meditation is undoubtedly at the top of that list.
A road warrior is always exploring. There are new cities, new landscapes, and new trails to open your mind to new ideas. Meditation gives you an opportunity to make that learning deeper and more transformative.
As your eyes will open to new vistas, you’ll want to match that experience with deeper insights. Meditation will help you make more conscious choices about your habits and values. You’ll grow more and have more wisdom to share with the world when you get back.
Do you need any more reasons to start meditating? Learn the basics today, so you can get out there and bring your full, awakened self to your next adventure.
Feeling tech-savvy? Download these mobile apps to kickstart your meditation skills.