When the warm weather is upon us, at home or abroad, our demeanour often changes to a sunnier and more open disposition. Whether it is taking a more positive approach to our thoughts, finding ourselves to be more sentimental or simply softening to experiences we wouldn’t normally try. Anyhow, I thought it would be neat to share my views on what I’ve learned about love from travelling and surfing.
5. Be comfortable
More often than not, we feel awkward and uncomfortable when we’re in new situations. Whether it’s stepping out to a new foreign land, getting back to speed on a soft top after months of not surfing or chatting with your new hostelmates for the first time. Once our rosy cheeks, nervous stutter and awkwardness subsides it is safe to say we are well on our way to achieving some sort of comfort level. Being comfortable is important, as it allows us to communicate with confidence of what we want or don’t want which hopefully firms up a solid and honest line of communication.
“So, I think I’m done with this session. I don’t want to get pounded by the waves anymore today” vs. “Oh, you want to continue surfing? Sure, we’ll keep going…”
4. Balance is key
Whether it’s time weighting beach times vs. adventure activities, going out to eat or cooking at the hostel or re-balancing your body so you don’t get tossed off your board – balance is key. Now remember, balance isn’t about 50/50 all the time as it isn’t realistic. Some days we want to be super active and others, we want to be lazy bums and lay out in the sun all day with a mojito. Whether it’s 90/10, 70/30 or even 20/80, we need to be open to making adjustments to ensure that the balance is there. Nothing is perfect, and things do go off balance but it is up to you whether you want to continue to adjust and re-balance or simply, bail. After so many face plants, you’ll find your balance and ride that wave in with joy and satisfaction.
3. Open your heart to taking risks
Going to a foreign country solo and not knowing the language, trying a new activity that may potentially kill you (I’m talking about bridge jumping not surfing) or, paddling out to some waves that are more gnarly than expected are all risks. Calculated risks, of course, but still risks. It is the fear that paralyzes us – physically, emotionally, and mentally. Some of the scariest moments turn out to be pretty awesome experiences, but that happens once we open our hearts up to assume the risk. Things happen all the time, positive and negative. At the end of the day, would it not be better to have tried instead of looking back at the past with regret?
2. Never give up hope
Food poisoning on vacation, broken toe from bike riding, or your legs getting shredded to pieces by a soft top leaving the worst scars. It’s the fire in your belly that keeps you going or, you pack it in and call it quits. Patience and tolerance differs in each person, but the one thing we should hold on to is to never give up hope. It was one experience, that seems like a big deal right now but over time, it will be a speck in the past and something to laugh about. You will get healthy (or just pass on street food entirely), broken toe will heal with time and the scars will remind and teach you to find another alternative. Totally normal to bum out, but always hold on to that hope for better and more exciting experiences in the future.
1. Love who you are
The best thing about the world is that we’re different and unique. Like waves, we come in all shapes and sizes with quirks of our own. If we were perfect, we’d be boring. Who likes boring? The definition of “ideal” is so different across the world, why should we get caught up in what the North American media depicts as the “ideal” body type and person. For the record, “Kimye” shouldn’t be a benchmark for anything – ever.
As challenging or easy as it is, we are the way we are and should love ourselves for being so unique. Surround yourself with people who love and accept you for who you are and not with people who want to turn you into someone else. No matter what your style is, own it and rock it!
Love starts with you. In order for you to believe and accept love or positives vibes from others, you gotta own it for yourself.
This post was inspired by four couples that I had the opportunity of spending time with during my recent travels to South Dakota, New York and New Jersey.