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Sharing ideas around mental health and life. In the hopes that the good ones will take flight

WALKING WALES (FOR CENTRE POINT) – PART 6

Onnnnneeeeeeee wwweeeeeeeeeeeeeeekkkkk away!!!!!!! The walk is one week away.

I know I skipped a week. But the previous week was pretty uneventful, and I didn't want to bore you - I do care. This week I did a circa 14 mile walk with Duncan. We walked from Embankment in London and followed the river Thames west. I think it dawned on us both how tough this challenge is going to be. I then did a short walk in the South Downs near Chichester on Saturday and a short walk in the New Forest today. My new boots are the bomb-diggity. They are comfy and so far not causing blisters. Praise the boot Gods.

Stuart Ralph New Forest

I got the last of the main bits and bobs for the trip. Such as:

  • Environmentally friendly soap - so we can wash our nuts in the river.
  • Micro-fibre towel - quick drying and lightweight. But damn is it pricey.
  • Compass - so I can look like I know what I'm doing.
  • Plastic case for the maps - to further my awesome look.
  • Kendal Mint Cake - because it's part of being an explorer.

I also planned day 4 and 5 of our journey on the many many maps we have. Tomorrow I will finish day 6 and 7. I am pretty worried that translating this map knowledge to the real world may not quite work.

I will try and update you either before or directly after our adventure. I will try to update you all throughout on Twitter.

To your success,
Stu

If you want to donate: https://www.justgiving.com/walk-wales-2015/

I will be tweeting throughout so you can keep up to date - follow me @StuartARalph.

Find out more about my challenge here: Walking Wales for Centre Point

Here's part one of my adventure update:
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 1
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 2
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 3
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 4
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 5

Preach Alan Preaacccchhhhhhhh

I had to share this beautiful video by British philosopher Alan Watts. Alan neatly decribes the hoax of life. The lie we get told from a young age. There is no end goal. The goal of life should be to dance to the music of life. I'll let Watts say it better:

[wpdevart_youtube]https://youtu.be/29atSZKbmS4?list=PLECAAB7CE7EC03811[/wpdevart_youtube]
To your success,

Stu

What’s In Your Heart Right Now? Do That

Yo,

For the last few years I've racked my brain trying to find out my ultimate purpose, or raison d'etre. I've been very close to it for a couple years, however I could never feel certain about exactly why I did what I did. If you are searching for your purpose this article is for you.

Before I get into the bulk of my point I want to offer you two great ways of finding your purpose below:

Tai Lopez - Orwellian Destiny: https://youtu.be/xQeA_v7ohy8?t=4m58s I couldn't actually find Tai talking about it. But here is a guy who interviewed Tai talking about it. Great exercise.

Tony Robbins - Has some questions for you: https://youtu.be/5obQyEh4W-M?t=49m27s

Ok, so when you have time, do the above two exercises. They should help greatly. In the mean time I want to offer some advice you can immediately sink your teeth into.

When I was torturing my brain, hoping that my "why" would slap me round the face, I was in turmoil. I was going over the same evidence. The same stimuli day to day. Guess what. My why never came up with it. You may have found this.

My challenge to you is: What is in your heart right now?

The Tao, meaning the way. Is a concept of flow. That the world or universe has a flow/energy. I was fighting this flow for many years. As most Taoists know you can't fight the Tao. Which is what you are doing by constantly thinking about your why. So when I asked you what is in your heart right now? I truly want to know. Whether what is in your heart right now is your ultimate "why" or not. It doesn't matter. What matters is you get in alignment with your Tao. You live according to your flow. Over time you will see patterns in what was in your heart each day. Then you will have some real data based on your daily inspiration. You can analyse that data and start to figure out your "why".

[youtube]https://youtu.be/OnK8SgrCdLM[/youtube]

What ever is in your heart right now. *Go do it. Go share it. Go be it.

Let me know in the comments below.

To your success,

Stu

*Unless you want to kill people. Please don't do that.

WALKING WALES (FOR CENTRE POINT) – PART 5

There has been a lot of progress this week towards my goal of navigating across Wales in one week. Details below.

My friend and now fellow adventurer Duncan (host of The Spirit Pig podcast) has agreed to join me. It's going to be great to have company other than the sheep.

I've made my kit list. I'm trying to be as light as possible as I don't want to lumber a load of shit across Wales. I've purchased my bivvy bag. I'll be using this to sleep in, so I don't have to carry a tent.

Yesterday I went on a 10 mile training walk with my friend Guvner around Richmond, towards Kingston and back through Twickenham. The walk was good, except my feet started to feel sore. It wasn't until I got back that I realised I hadn't put my innersoles back in after washing my boots. Haha epic failure.

Today I planned day 3 of our route. Another 23 miles (roughly). Day 3 will mainly be following roads, as the national trails are slightly long winded in this section. We'll hit a pub at the end of the day for some grub and a beer (or five). The next day will begin our journey into the beautiful but isolated Snowdonia.

This coming week I'll be doing 20 miles training. I will also plan day 4 and 5 of the trip.

I'm going to film the trip, what do you want me to record/document?

To your success,
Stu

If you want to donate: https://www.justgiving.com/walk-wales-2015/

I will be tweeting throughout so you can keep up to date - follow me @StuartARalph.

Find out more about my challenge here: Walking Wales for Centre Point

Here's part one of my adventure update:
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 1
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 2
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 3
Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 4

You’re not X. You Are Human!

I will start with the end – YOU ARE HUMAN.

I was having a passionate chat with my friend today. To give background he is British and of African ancestry (Nigerian). He’s very loving of equal rights, and rightly so. He can be more Malcolm X than MLK. Which has resulted in us clashing at times. I’m not going to even say that African decedents in America and around the world really have equal rights. Yes in a legal sense but they do seem to get picked on in the US, prison stats would re-enforce this. Some residual hatred and stereotyping remains from the times of slavery. This needs to be changed. My friend and I both agree on this.

Where we differ is in our approach. He is solely focused on black people. Whereas I chip in with “you should be focused on all people”. He fervently buys into the idea of black and white. I’m saying that by accepting those labels you are indirectly making something insignificant the defining identity variable. The thing that people pigeon hole themselves by. This furthers discrimination. Imagine a world where someone tries labeling you and you say “nah man, I’m human”.

For me, labels are bullshit. I’m a Christian, I’m a Muslim, I’m black, I’m a lawyer. You are none of those things. You are a human being. You are a human who practices law. You are a human of African origin. You are a human who’s faith is Buddhism.

My point is if we stopped putting so much importance on defining our identity with physical and cultural labels, and more time educating youth to realise that we are all one. That we are all human. That as a brotherhood, we need to love each other. When those old labels we so passionately clung too, wouldn’t seem as important.

I think the reason a lot of prejudice remains towards African Americans (as an example) is because we only ever cut down the plant (the issue), for example we stopped slavery, then got equal rights in place, but we left the root of the plant in the ground. So new issues grow back each year. We need to remove the root of the problem. That to me is seeing everyone as separate. If we all celebrated our one common interest, humanity, we may start turning it all around. Coleman Barks said it best when interpreting Sufi poet Rumi “You couldn't possibly go to war, if the friend of the beloved was everyone”. What he meant was if you knew (which you do deep down in your gut) that we are all connected at some level and we all share the same human fate, you could never treat anyone bad. Because you would only be hurting yourself.

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say that I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

-          John Lennon

If I help someone, it has nothing to do with their skin colour, their religion or their culture. It has everything to with humanity.

I guess my plea to you is: Please see the light that is in each person before you acknowledge other ‘real world’ factors.

A world with that perspective would remove racial and religious boundaries.

To your success,

Stu

The solution:

Regardless of what colour your skin, who your God is or your social status. Let's heed Martin Luther King's (Jesus') advice and love those that hate us, because they are just lost and sick individuals, desperately seeking home. Eventually with this strategy and saying "I'm human", we can get everyone on the same page. If someone really pushes you however, feel free to give them a slap (Disclaimer: At your own risk, absolute last resort, and your own free will).

P.S. Don't slap them. Walk away.

WALKING WALES (FOR CENTRE POINT) – PART 4

This week I did my longest training walk yet - 13.6 miles. I walked from Tower Hill in London all the way to the very west part of London. It was fun ploughing through all the tourists. Realistic training for Wales don't you think. The walk was all good, apart from the final two miles got tough. I was bursting for a piss. So I had to stop in a McDonalds (I grabbed a large chocolate milkshake while I was there, of course).

Then last night I went on a micro adventure with my friend Eliot. We went camping in the wild landscape of Surrey. I used nothing but a sleeping bag and survival bag for warmth and shelter. In preparation for my no tent journey. I'm slowly getting used to sleeping without a tent. I'm hoping that on the trip I will be so knackered each night that I will fall into a deep sleep.

A quick update today. More map planning and training walks coming this week.

To your success,

Stu

P.S. I want to hear about any adventures you have coming up, or want to do? Comment below.

If you want to donate: https://www.justgiving.com/walk-wales-2015/

I will be tweeting throughout so you can keep up to date - follow me @StuartARalph.

Find out more about my challenge here: Walking Wales for Centre Point

Here's part one of my adventure update:

Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 1

Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 2

Remove Vices With The App SINCE

I've found a great app that can accompany my book 'Challenge Yourself, I Dare You'. Whether you have or have not read my book, the app 'Since' is amazing at encouraging vice removal in your life. Vices are those things that hold you back.

The app 'Since' allows you to create squares for each of your vices, and counts the days you have not done said vice. If you fail, it even has a 'oops, start counting again' button.

The reason I love this app is because tracking your performance be that on a graph or numbered square it encourages the user to continue pursuing the goal.

Since App

Have you used the app? If you do use it I'd love to hear how you found it and what you are giving up for a better life. Comment below.

To your success,

Stu

Let me know about your challenge on social media using #30DaysIDareYou

 

Walking Wales (For Centre Point) – Part 3

Yo,

Week 3 done.

I only managed to get one training walk in. I took a stroll around Richmond and Twickenham for 9 miles. I did it in just over 2 hours. So with rough calculations my walking time each day in Wales will be 5 hours. This of course doesn't factor in mountains, weather and rest stops. I did ok on the 9 miles, I only got one blister. Which I believe was due to my right boot not being tight enough. This week I got a 13 miler to do, and on the weekend I'll be doing a micro adventure which will involve some hill walking.

Richmond River

Richmond River Sunset

I started route planning yesterday. What the fuck. It's so complex. Needless to say I ploughed through. Luckily for day 1 and 2 there is a national trail I can follow. The Breacon Beacons will be tough both physically and navigationally, but oh my will it be worth it. If you have any map reading tips, let me know in the comment box below.

Maps

Key learning this week:

Broke down your goal. I was terrified of route planning. So I just broke it down to way days planning at a time. Bitesize pieces are easier to digest.

To your success,

Stu

P.S. I want to hear about any adventures you have coming up, or want to do? Comment below.

If you want to donate: https://www.justgiving.com/walk-wales-2015/

I will be tweeting throughout so you can keep up to date - follow me @StuartARalph.

Find out more about my challenge here: Walking Wales for Centre Point

Here's part one of my adventure update:

Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 1

Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 2

WALKING WALES (FOR CENTRE POINT) – PART 2

Hey dude/dudette,

This week I've made some good progress on my goal of walking Wales in 7 days, and raised some more money.

Here's what I'll cover in this update:

  • Training plan
  • Visiting Centre Point HQ
  • Purchased my bag and did some supplies research

I designed a 7 week training plan. It covers cardio, and strength. The bulk of it comes from actually walking, up to 70 miles a week. There is no training like doing the actual thing. The reason I don't go over 50 miles in training is because of my work schedule and more importantly I don't want to fatigue myself.

Training

On Tuesday I got to visit one of Centre Point's main offices in London. In fact it was their wellness centre. Not sure its' exact name. It was cool to meet with them and talk about the charity. They do some really noble work. Helping 16-25 years get back on their feet, so that they don't fall into a life of homelessness. It was hard not to shed a tear. Not all homelessness is caused by alcoholism or drug taking.

I finally purchased my bag, I managed to get a good one with very soft straps. No one likes chaffing. I've started my research into what supplies I need. I'm looking for the lightest versions of each thing. Weight is going to be one of the key differences between finishing in 7 days and not finishing at all.

I finally purchased all of my maps. They will take up half my backpack haha.

Maps

11 explorer maps, 2 road maps

Key learning this week:

Certain goals can seem out of reach and scary. However, when you start taking small amounts of action, they appear much more achievable.

To your success,

Stu

P.S. I want to hear about any adventures you have coming up, or want to do? Comment below.

If you want to donate: https://www.justgiving.com/walk-wales-2015/

I will be tweeting throughout so you can keep up to date - follow me @StuartARalph.

Find out more about my challenge here: Walking Wales for Centre Point

Here's part one of my adventure update: Walking Wales for Centre Point - Part 1

Walking Wales (For Centre Point) – Part 1

In my initial article on walking the entire length of Wales for the charity Centre Point, I set out my challenge. I now want to update you each week with my progress, planning and lessons learned. I'm sure there will be much drama, fear and hopefully plenty of laughable situations, but above all that, I hope there will be some inspiring words.

So it was just over a week ago since I committed to this nutty challenge. In true Stuart Ralph fashion I came up with the idea and without thinking locked myself in. As I am now unravelling, walking 23 miles a day with a backpack on hilly terrain is harder than my ego initially anticipated. This may catch me out, however I think there is a valuable lesson here. If I had truly thought about it I never would have committed. I think there is genius in committing to some challenges without thinking. It's like false courage. Whatever the outcome, I'm glad I'm pushing myself and pursuing something great.

That being said, I've started training. I did my first 8 mile walk. It was good except my innersoles are really old and caused me a lot of pain. Fear not, new springy innersoles have been purchased. I'm doing a 10 miler tomorrow morning, starting at 7am.

A lot of people think I'm crazy. In the good way. Which is awesome, it's nice to have their support. Some people, mostly family are concerned for my safety. They know I am a cautious individual, but family will always worry - it's a good thing. I have realised that people will project their fears and perceived limitations on to you. Try not to take this on board, unless it's constructive. If I'm already scared to do this, the last thing I want is someone else's negative scripts running in my head. Trust your intuition and planning.

Right I got to go get some rest for my walk tomorrow.

Good night, God bless and stay tuned for part 2 of my adventure (map route planning),

Stu

If you want to donate: https://www.justgiving.com/walk-wales-2015/

I will be tweeting throughout so you can keep up to date - follow me @StuartARalph.

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