The Spirit of Adventure Requires These 5 Things

Bringing what matters back into adventure.

So much of our lives are based around material possessions. If you are like me, gear takes up a whole lot of space at home. I am outside to connect with nature while also obsessed with the newest gear to enhance those experiences. As our families grow, so does the amount of gear everyone needs.

While shopping, I came to the realization that the gear will always get better. There will always be something new and shiny to research and buy. But what do we really need? What do kids, your adult inner child included, really need beyond all the toys?

Here at Sawyer, we want to inspire a spirit of adventure in kids. In all my contemplation about what instilled that spirit of adventure in me, I came up with a list of 5 things. I hope these 5 will bring you back to realizing what really makes getting outside with your families meaningful and ultimately impactful on everyone's lives.

1. Fresh Air 

Our cities are full pollution and we need to get outside them! Time outside is becoming alarmingly infrequent for the general population, even invading childhood. Get outside and breathe! Fresh air is not only good for everyone, bringing attention to your breath will make your more present in the moment.

2. Play Time 

We need LOTS of unstructured play time as kids, adults, individuals, and as families. Real play time, where we can do whatever we want. Actual time away from expectation and direction. When is the last time you went on an adventure without a big goal? Time spent simply being in beautiful places is rejuvenating. Allow yourself and your kids freedom to explore and inspire wonderment.

3. Unconditional Love 

We all make mistakes and fall short of expectations. However, everyone needs unconditional love. Kids need to know that no matter what mistakes they make, it doesn’t change their relationship with their parents. They want to know that you will always think the best of them. As we grow into adventure seeking adults, this stays with us. The connections we make outside tend to grow into impactful relationships. I think we can always be reminded to re-embody unconditional love.Understanding this basic need may bring an altruistic and empathetic element to your next adventure. 

4. Nature 

For kids and adults alike, nature is the best toy. Sticks, rocks, water, dirt, grass – all toys that cost nothing at all. A lake, trail, summit, field full of flowers…the simple enjoyment of being there and having access to natural materials is what it’s really about and even better than a room full of toys. I mean, isn't that the reason you bought all that gear in the first place? 

5. Presence 

In a world full of distraction, attention is a priceless gift. It is so easy to get lost in capturing the moments outside that we forget to take the time to really be present. Not only does this distraction degrade from our experience but also from the connections we are making with our families and friends. Sure, capture those moments but make sure to set aside time to really be there, with your family and without the camera. 

I’m not advocating for you to sell off all that gear, a few toys are good, and I’m still a self proclaimed “gear junky.” However, the more simplistic we can make outside time the more we open ourselves and our kids to creativity, focus, connection, and greater resourcefulness.

Let’s fill our time outside with: 

Memories instead of things -  Moments instead of distractions - Connection instead of staged pictures - And being instead of overwhelming doing. 

With a spirit of adventure, 

Cindi Lou Grant, The Sawyer Kid Co. 

Published: August 30, 2017

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph.

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