I remember coming home from National CHYK Camp and receiving a message from a friend asking me how camp was. At the time, I was still thinking about all the logical and yet perspective-shifting knowledge we’d received to give a proper answer so I responded with something like, “yeah it was fantastic, how was your weekend?” which is a pretty average response considering that my weekend was a little bit more than just ‘fantastic’. So, a few days ago, when I sat down to write about my experience at camp, I thought about the same question and here’s what I wish I told my friend:

Since camp, my attitude has changed entirely – every day has become an opportunity to challenge myself and to develop my skills. Every boring activity is an opportunity to build mindfulness so that I can excel when new opportunities arise. And most of all, I’ve become more aware of how every single action I do, from the way I make my cereal in the morning to the way I study for exams, is within my control. Every moment is an opportunity that is full of potential or just an unforgotten moment in the past and it’s all really just a matter of choice. This is probably one of the most empowering lessons I took away from camp. The sense of fulfilment in every action, and the motivation to achieve your goal/clarity to create goals, means that waking up every morning is an exciting process rather than a tiresome one.

So, if you ask me about my favourite aspect of camp, I’ll still get all excited and ramble on about how good the food was, and all the great people there, and how we would try and get to talks as early as possible so we could secure front row seats, and the surreal silence of the morning mediation sessions and the hilarious activities – but despite all those incredible things, my favourite thing about camp would have to be the feeling of waking up every day and knowing that today, I am going to be better than I have ever been (which means that tomorrow, I will have to opportunity to supersede that!). There’s not a lot that beats the feeling of not only knowing where you want to go in life, but also having the complete ownership over the process of getting there.

So, to my friend who asked “how was camp?”, and to pretty much any person who has any remote interest in improving their quality of living in any way, I would love to tell you more and more about everything that camp was, but really, the only fitting response I have is, “Why weren’t you there?”.

Author: Aashritha Kumar

Date Published: 5th May, 2016