Failure and being comfortable outdoors....
For me, bushcraft is essentially going out and using the resources around you to make yourself comfortable.
Emphasis on the 'yourself'
Everybody has different skill levels and backgrounds of experience in the outdoors and elsewhere, so only you know when your time spent outside is enjoyable or not.
In the end, we go outdoors for fun and we want to enjoy ourselves.
We must know the limits and gaps in our knowledge, and understand that until we've mastered a certain skill, then we might have to take that extra bit of kit, or use that cotton wool and Vaseline for example.
This is perfectly fine and all part of the learning process.
The skills required to spend periods of time outdoors with minimal kit take years to learn and refine, so don't be afraid if you have to bail out of a situation because you're cold and wet and not having fun, that's not what we're going out for.
Any experience, even bad, builds us as people. To get the most out of these situations though, it is important to review what went wrong and find a solution for next time. Maybe your sleeping bag wasn't the correct rating for the season, or you didn't gather enough firewood for the night.
'Never waste a moment of failure. Take every chance to learn from your mistakes and gather information regarding where you went wrong and where you need to be stronger in the future.....take as much value from defeat as you can. Use it to your advantage.'
-extract from SAS Who Dares Wins, Leadership Secrets From The Special Forces
This 'debrief' process is used primarily in the military, but can be applied elsewhere. It is where the most valuable learning takes place.
Especially when teaching yourself, trial and error is the way it goes. The most important thing is to just get out there and give things a go, experience what each season has to offer and keep building on your skills. Most importantly: decompress, unwind and enjoy yourself.
'Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall'
Inspiration for this post credited to Tim Davies at FastJetPerformance.com and Joe Robinet Bushcraft
Stay safe out there
Jack from @livers_outdoors
Photos top to bottom:
-Taking in the views on a dofe silver expedition
-Dehydrated jelly ear fungi, ivy soap, fruit leather and nettle cordage
-Relaxing at camp with hot chocolate on the fire