This was advice from a long-term cruiser and a friend.
I had to stop and think about this for a bit. I knew, with just five small words, she’d said something remarkable.
Don’t sweat the small stuff.
Months of hard growth on the lines – days of cleaning . . . is it worth worrying about?
What is the small stuff on board?
The laundry (in cold water, by hand)
The blocked loo (marine toilets are renowned for this delightful occurrence)
The entire boat turning into a workshop
Running out of gas in the middle of cooking
Salt saturated cushions that just won’t dry
A lumpy sea
Too much wind
Cleaning behind the cooker – is it worth getting worked up about it?
So when do you ‘sweat’? Well usually you don’t, usually there’s no time.
Maybe you’d sweat during a storm, which can last for days. But, generally ‘sticky’ moments on board are in bursts:
fingers of lightning
winds shifting to create an untenable anchorage
broken rudder . . .
. . . these are moments when you may sweat . . . IF YOU HAVE TIME.
Instead of sweating you’ll be too busy doing what’s necessary.
The great thing is, those moments where you don’t have time to sweat are great training for when it really matters.
Rough seas – do what’s necessary to make the boat safe, then relax
Yes, cruising can have its shitty moments, it can be scary, but each challenging moment will build your confidence and faith in your boat and yourself – creating comfort and a more relaxed life that just keeps on improving.
Tomorrow is the next instalment on our CRUISING CLINIC – What’s so great about cruising?