Monday, May 18, 2015

1:15pm MSO to LAX / Why I'm not taking my flight today

At 1:15pm, I have an all-expense paid trip to LA for the final round before getting accepted to go on an extreme reality TV show...and I'm not going to take it. Instead, I'm going to sip my coffee and sit in front of my computer. 

A few months ago, I was approached by this primitive survival show. They asked if I'd be interested in pursuing it and I shut it down pretty quickly. "No way, I don't really have any primitive survival skills...It's too much exposure." (Nudity would be involved.) But there was a part of the offer that kept tickling me.

Then I synchronistically met Trenton and got a burst of energy around the show. He's a survivalist and teacher, and I thought, "This was meant to be!" This newfound energy lead to reinitiating the process with the casting company and learning the skills I'd need to prepare for something new and epic! Trenton taught me how to make fire using a bow drill! And build a shelter! -- all out of nothing but the resources around me in the woods. I was stoked to successfully learn skills that always felt elusive and mysterious, and secretly grew in excitement about the potential to have my moment in the public eye. (aka: Becoming famous!)
Tools used for some backyard fire shenanigans. 
My first solo primitive friction fire.
This is a lean-to primitive shelter. It's not complete in this picture, but getting there.

Two major things were driving my pursuit of this show:
1. I've wanted to be famous ever since reality shows became a thing during my lifetime. From American Gladiators to Kelly Clarkson to YouTube seems like so many people make it big and live some glamorous spotlight life. (K, I'm not sure the American Gladiators are living it up per say, but I loved that show as a kid and felt compelled to mention them!) And as much as I know about how fame does not equal being truly known....fame was/is still my siren's call. I'd even dare to say that Millenials are just needy in this way.

2. I am like a moth to a flame and my flame is literally anything new, exciting, and adventurous. It gets me almost every time. I love this part of me because I've lived the life I have and am now here in Montana because of this curiosity, this insatiable part that needs to explore. So this primitive survival challenge was incredibly enticing. "I mean, when would I ever get a chance to do something as extreme as this?!" I wanted to know badly what would happen if I took on this challenge. This desire to know, to experience, to go and try is unbelievably strong inside of me. 

The desire for fame isn't a great reason to go do something, but that desire to try new things is good, isn't it? So why not go for it?

I mean, I still have some time before I could catch my flight. And believe me, I'm tempted...even if just for a new experience of going through the final stages of casting. But deeper than my desire for new experiences is this desire to focus and be right here.

In an age of major FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) and what seems like the perfect adventurous life publicized on Instagram, I can feel a bounding desire to have a grander and more epic life. But why? Because what I have isn't good enough? Sometimes my actions can convey that. 

So I'm here in my home office on this beautiful and windy morning, drinking the delicious coffee I make myself every morning, after a workout I have every Monday morning, looking at the computer screen I look at almost every day....choosing this moment. As hard as it is to imagine me flying to LA for an entirely new experience, I'm choosing this one. As mundane as it may seem in contrast to the path I just said no to, I'm choosing to feel content today, to feel grateful for what I have, and to remember that I don't need that new exciting "toy" - if you will - to have a satisfying well-lived life.

I'm choosing this:


  1. Your life is nothing but mundane. You learned some great skills that can help you enjoy wilderness and stay safe doing so, as well as skills you can share with others.

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks for helping me process Heather!!


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