They say the older you get, the more likely you are to slow down.

These days, I'm still swinging for the moon, yet the sluggish physicality has begun to settle in. Motivation comes and goes, never staying long enough each time. It doesn't help that there's a pandemic happening all around us.

Once the nightlife came to a screeching halt, I began to realize how much of my life I've been wasting at bars and clubs. The fast life and the endless hustle, two motifs that are no longer an option. In fact, the urge to want to go out dims more and more as each day passes.

Lately, I've been enjoying the simple joys of life: going for walks, living off the land, taking in the great outdoors, chopping wood. You know, the characteristics of a lumberjack. The beard has grown in quite strong over the past year and my flannel collection is steadily growing.

I've found peace outside, a peace that was lost beneath the loud sounds of a DJ and saturated from a night of drinking. In reality, there's nothing wrong with having a couple of brewskis now and then, but these days I've been enjoying them a little better in the woods or after a good wood-splitting session. I've grown fond of my ax and have calibrated the "sweet spot" with every swinging stroke, chopping up logs at a more steady pace.

There's just something about an outdoorsman that satisfies my soul. I've had times where I've found myself lost within the beauty of the woods, basking in the stillness, and soaking up the tranquility of the moment.

When it comes to mental health, it's quite important to keep track of these days. That's why I'm relishing the transformation from a night-owl to a woodsman. Although it's a strenuous and physical way to live, it's rewarding in the end. But here's what you need to do:

1. Stay in Shape: Chopping wood is a strenuous workout that's the underdog of fitness. It takes a good force to drive the sharp wedge through oak or sappy pine, so getting a solid split on the first try is always the advantage rather than chipping away. You'll exert more power, but you'll be able to maintain your endurance better this way.

2. Break Away From Technology: If you find yourself surrounded by Mother Nature, then try putting your phone down for a change. Take your Instagram-worthy photos and move on. There's plenty of time to post them later. Give your eyes a rest from the screen and take in your surroundings. Not only will your battery life thank you, but subconsciously, your soul thanks you. It's like a hot bowl of chicken noodle soup on a cold winter's day.

3. Beer Tasted Better: There's nothing more rewarding than an ice-cold beer after a vigorous chop session and log stacking. You're burning calories while you're working so go ahead and have a beer or two, you earned it, but take it down slow. Enjoy the hops and the suds, make it last a little longer; you're surrounded by God's country.

Now, I know that the lumberjack life isn't for everyone, but I'll tell you that once I started leaning in that direction, I began to care less about the drama and more about backwood hiking trails. I stopped eating food that's bad for you and lived off the land to save a little money. These are the little things I'm talking about that can completely change a person's outlook on the world and life in general and the best part about it all is that it doesn't cost a thing to admire God's work. If anything you're bettering yourself, trust me, I made the change and I'm glad I did.

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