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5 Ways to Improve Your Camping Trip

5 Ways to Improve Your Camping Trip

5 Ways to Improve Your Camping Trip

Every year, many families decide to enjoy some time in nature with a camping trip. But, if you don’t camp often, it can be difficult to determine exactly what you need to make your trip the best it can be. Luckily, there are a number of options that can help make your next camping adventure one to remember. To help you get started, here are five ways you can improve your camping trip.

Get the Right Gear

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Your first step toward a great trip is by picking the right camping gear. The exact items you need may vary a bit depending on the season and the location of your camp, but certain basics are required no matter what.

First, you will need a high-quality tent. Most tents are rated for specific seasons or conditions and will let you know how many people can sleep in the space. When choosing the size of the tent, take into consideration any other supplies you need to keep covered as you will need to purchase a larger size to compensate. Many tents that state they can sleep four don’t provide much room for anything else, so you may want to choose one that sleeps five or six if you have a decent amount of gear.

Next, you will need sleeping bags for every person or couple, and any other bedding you might want. You can choose to bring pillows and additional blankets, as well as air mattresses or cots, though those are often considered extras.

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Food and Beverages

You want to make sure you have enough food and beverages available for everyone who will be coming, even if you hope to find food by fishing, hunting, or gathering. Since being able to obtain food onsite is never guaranteed, it is better to bring too much than too little.

If you are staying in an area with certain predatory animals, like bears, you also want to make sure you have proper storage containers to help prevent the smell from attracting unwanted guests.

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Fire Starter

When having a campfire is part of your plan, it is smart to bring some sort of fire starter. There are many commercial options available, though homemade fire starter can also work well. If you are staying in a public park or recreational area, check any rules regarding the collection of firewood before you head out on your trip. If you want to find wood onsite, then make sure to bring some of your own.

However, if a burn ban is in place, having a fire might not be an option. Again, review the current status of the campsite you have chosen before you leave so you can adjust accordingly.

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Plan Activities

While you don’t need to schedule every moment, it isn’t a bad idea to schedule some camping activities. This can include simple options like hiking or swimming, as well as games or cooking. Plan based on how active of a trip you would like, and consider who will be going. For example, a pair of adults may be happy to sit outside and read, but active children may need more entertaining activities to keep them busy.

Keep Someone Informed

Even though cell service is widely available, you may have trouble finding a signal when out in a large park. As an added safety precaution, make sure someone else, like a friend or family member, knows where you will be and when you are due to return. That way, if something were to happen, they can inform authorities regarding your whereabouts.

While you may not want to think about something going wrong, it is hard to put a price on peace of mind. And knowing someone not on the trip is able to call for help if you need it can make it easier to enjoy yourself while you are out in the great unknown.

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Shelly Green

Entrepreneur writer and a blogger

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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Featured photo credit: Radu Florin via unsplash.com

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