We are all living a life that took decades to produce. Like the path of a glacier, our lives consist of the habits and elements that have been slowly carving out our existence. Because glaciers move so slowly, we can’t always see their destructive or creative power until they’ve done what they’ve done.
Sometimes we get the chance to catch them in the act and alter their course, but more often than not, we are required to experience the “disaster” they’ve slowly created before we even recognize their existence.
I Had Lost My Way
Awhile back someone asked me, “What do you love doing for fun? What still gets you excited?
My answer scared the hell out of me and put me on the radical path you see before you.
“Nothing” I said. The room went quiet.
I slowly looked towards my wife, Belisa. Knowing me better than anyone, she realized the consequence and impact of my answer.
It would seem that the last bit of my adventurous and recreational spirit had been consumed and frozen in the “glacier” of what my life had slowly become. Clearly I had to act.
The Quick Story
It took about seven years to happen. The “glacier” got pushed in this disastrous direction when I left the SEAL Teams. Obviously the life of a SEAL is an active one, but my life outside of work was very active as well. I just assumed it was all because I had a lot of energy. I hadn’t realized that there was something deeper going on.
I thought I liked picking locks because it was cool and interesting. I thought I liked backpacking because I was outdoors and enjoying nature. I thought I liked spearfishing, surfing and mountain biking because the activities relaxed me.
I thought it was me, Eric, out there doing all that stuff purely for the joy of it; but, it turned out that there was purpose behind every “active” thing that I did, and when I lost that purpose I began to lose the active life that went with it.
You see, back then, every run was a training run, so I ran as much as I could. Every hike a “shakeout patrol” to test new gear, so I hiked as often as I wanted. Even trips to Disneyland were opportunities to hone my Personal Security Detachment (PSD) skills while protecting my family.
Everything, one way or the other, was tied to a purpose and it was the “purpose” that kept me active, not my energy. So when I lost my purpose, I began to lose my active life. The “glacier” began to move on.
Why You Need A “Purpose” To Get Some
Why do we need a purpose to get outdoors, hike, camp, run, bike, spearfish, paddle board or travel the world? Shouldn’t the activity alone be the purpose? Maybe, but for me it wasn’t enough. Just “wanting” to go wasn’t working, and I would argue this to be true for most of us. This is why many of us don’t really do that much. At least not anymore.
Sad? Absolutely, but how many trips have you not gone on or miles have you not ran because you had “things” to do? Exactly! We need something more important to do.
I needed a purpose – a mission that was so important that it would break me free from the lifeless chains of stress and obligation. I needed a reason to travel to Africa twice this year, spend weeks under the stars of the Sierras and scout diving, paddle boarding and climbing spots on the Amalfi coast of Italy. I needed to survive, and the best way to survive is to be ready.
Prepping On Purpose
In my article “Stop Preparing For Emergencies”, I talk about this very concept, but after reading many of the comments from “You Are What You’re Ready For” I thought it important to give everyone a little more “juice” to inspire them to for sure “be ready” for their life.
This tactical, special operations meets adventure executive “Preppers” mentality has captured the attention of many for good reason. On a very human level we all know we’re responsible for our own survival as well as for those who depend on us. Should we find ourselves safe and sound we know there are others, many others, on this planet who still need help. Prepping is at our core of being human, unless that part of your soul has been frozen.
As I’ve said many times, the disaster you’re prepping for has probably already hit you. It just happened so slowly that you didn’t even notice.
So, don’t just “go camping.” Practice extracting your family into the woods to survive, in comfort, for the weekend.
Don’t “travel the world.” Put yourself in new situations to test and evaluate your gear and ability to move around.
Don’t “go jogging” because you want to be thin. Condition yourself to escape and evade, transit trails and climb mountains.
Let’s get out and go so we can live.
What have you been “wanting” to do that life has stopped you from doing? Let’s see if together we can tie it to your very survival. Let’s see if we can find a way that you “have” to do it.
About Eric Davis
Eric Davis served our country as a U.S. Navy SEAL and decorated veteran of the Global War on Terror. Eric has been recognized as one of the premier sniper instructors in the U.S. military and has served as a Master Training Specialist at the SEAL sniper school. Davis is also the host of The Loadout Room, author at SOFREP, a GovX "Insider" and founder of the human performance company Average Frog. Follow him, and all his exploits, on Twitter @EricDavis215