Anna Blackwell, a lady not afraid of a challenge, faced a different kind of challenge on a recent trip to Arctic Norway. Something as mundane as luggage not appearing after a flight can throw a spanner in the works and plans need to be altered on the go. We asked Anna how she dealt with adversity and still managed to have a great trip.
Over to Anna…
We’ve all been in the position where we’ve tried something new and it hasn’t quite worked out. Whether it’s our first attempt at a sport we’ve not tried before or pushing ourselves that bit harder and faster on the trail, sometimes we just land flat on our faces and think to ourselves “why did I bother?”.
The thing is, there’s no shame in failure. It just means that you were willing to put yourself out there and test your limits. But it’s how we respond to things not going to plan that shows our true colours.
My most recent adventure was supposed to be a 150 km trek across an archipelago in arctic Norway. However, on day one, the world got in our way and announced that it had other plans for us. Determined to succeed in what we’d set out to achieve, we re-thought our trip slightly and gave it another whirl. We were promptly put in our place. Rather than giving up and returning home, we accepted that things were not going to pan out as we’d anticipated. We then threw ourselves into a completely unplanned and spontaneous adventure, and the results of that were far more magical and memorable than had things gone smoothly.
Though we unquestionably failed to achieve what we set out to, I do not in any way view that trip as a failure. Through using the below ways, we transformed what could have been a “failure” into an amazing adventure.
1/.HOLD ON TO WHATEVER IT WAS THAT MOTIVATED YOU TO GET OUT THERE IN THE FIRST PLACE.
You clearly believed in it enough for it to motivate you over the starting line in the first place. That belief and passion will still be somewhere inside you if you look hard enough.
2/.TAKE A STEP BACK AND REMOVE YOURSELF FROM THE EMOTION OF THE SITUATION.
When you’re in the heat of the moment, it’s so easy to allow yourself to get wrapped up in negativity, to jump to the conclusion that it’s all over and throw in the towel. But if you take a moment to view the situation from a more rational perspective, you’ll often find that there are alternatives and it’s not actually as much of a disaster as you first thought.
3/.THINK OF HOW GOOD IT WILL FEEL KNOWING YOU GAVE IT YOUR ALL.
Even if you don’t achieve what you set out to, the satisfaction and reward of throwing yourself into it and really doing your best will be worth it. You may be surprised by what you’re capable of.
4/.TAKE A BREAK (AND HAVE SOMETHING TO EAT!).
Often tiredness and hunger will exacerbate any negativity and make it much more likely that you make a decision you may later regret. An emergency stash of Haribo has saved me from accepting defeat on many an occasion and I’m all too familiar with the power of a mound of hot, delish pasta after a day that made me question why I was on that particular adventure in the first place!
5/. ACCEPT THAT SOMETIMES, REGARDLESS OF PLANNING AND PREPARATION, THINGS GO WRONG.
Ultimately, it may just be the case that there is no recovering the situation, try as you might. If this is the case, it’s important to be open to other possibilities and opportunities that may come your way. You may meet someone who shows you a new way of viewing a situation, or maybe you’ll discover a place that you never knew existed… Just because your original plan went out of the window, it doesn’t have to mean that the adventure stops there.
So don’t be afraid of failure; sometimes the unexpected adventures you have as a result can be so much better than the expected adventure!”
Anna has been wearing the Marin in Charcoal and got a special secret preview of our new colour base layers – look out for them – coming soon.