Finding Focus Through Hiking

Warren Wasescha, Sun Lakes Hiking Club

We live in a world of distractions. Try to get one thing done, and then a text message pings, a phone call comes in, or a breaking news alert is announced. The consequences can be a challenge. As one friend said, “When I feel constantly distracted, I don’t just feel irritated, I feel diminished.” The trend seems to be getting worse in a world with too much information coming at us way too fast. The antidote, of course, is finding ways to recapture the ability for deep focus, away from the things that distract us. Hiking is one way to do that.

Hiking helps get you into a healthy state of deep focus—that feeling where you are so absorbed in what you are doing that you lose all sense of time as you immerse yourself into the experience itself. It can get you into one of the deepest forms of focus and attention, allowing your brain to consciously or unconsciously tackle important challenges on your mind.

With hiking, there’s also that added bonus of great scenery and the ability to share the experience with others. For some, the mystique of hiking is simply the climb itself. You get to the top of the mountain glad the challenge is over but really wishing it could go on forever.

Any activity can help you get into “deep focus.” My wife finds it in quilting. But it requires keeping the television off and the phone in the other room. Others can find it on the golf course or in a tennis match—any singular activity without a lot of other distractions. Hiking comes with the added bonus of being away in nature, free from the distractions of urban life.

Like the idea of hiking and achieving a state of deep focus? Come join our club! We hike formally from November through April at three different intensity levels on Mondays, and a second “Moderate” intensity level on Wednesdays. Many of our club members also hike together on other days of the week informally and also in the summer. We are a friendly, inclusive group that welcomes all able-bodied hiking enthusiasts! Our club’s goal is to make group hiking fun, challenging, social, and safe.

Want to know more about our club? Just type “Sun Lakes Hiking Club” into your web browser to locate us on our Meetup site. Interested in summer hiking or have questions not found on our Meetup site? Please reach out to our president, Stu Frost, at [email protected].

We look forward to hiking with you!