Jokke Sommer is a professional skydiver and BASE jumper.
A man used to living life on the edge, he explains how that affects his mindset, and why it should affect yours too.
Does wing-suiting turn the volume down on everyday life?
When you go out in the mountains, you’re in your own mind and chilling and super relaxed. I find it more stressful to go to the supermarket because it’s where all the people that are already carrying a lot of stress are.
So going to a supermarket can be more stressful than jumping off a mountain?
Usually, there’s high levels of stress in certain places like that. So for example, for me, of course a mountain is normal but you still have that feeling of being completely free. Of course, it’s more hardcore to jump off a mountain than to go to the grocery store, but when I’m in the grocery store I’m not as free, so for me it’s the opposite.
Is it possible to live a ‘free’ life when you have kids and responsibilities like a full time job?
Yes, it’s a mindset, everything for me is a mindset. The reality evolves around someone, so everything is controlled by your mind and as long as you have the physical world, then of course you’re controlled. But, based on what you have in your reality, you can change a lot of it with just your mindset.
“You’ve got to be able to let go of negative thoughts and ideas that things are going to go badly. You need to just dare to be different.“
If I was to ask you for a couple of examples, what would they be?
Definitely to be calm under pressure, to be willing to be mentally free, to just let go. You’ve got to be able to let go of negative thoughts and ideas that things are going to go badly. You need to just dare to be different.
Anyone could do it you know, we all have the potential to do it. There’s something amazing about jumping off a mountain in terms of the extreme, physical and dangerous nature of it. It’s not like running a marathon.
Why do you think more people don’t live this way?
It’s not being able to let go of all the stuff that’s holding you back. That, I think for most people, is the challenge, the uncertainty and the fear of the unknown.
What you do revolves around the natural world. Global warming and its effects are getting harder to ignore.
Yeah and it’s going to get more crazy. Once the biodiversity around nature starts to die, the plants start to die, we die.
Have you witnessed this first hand?
Well, for example, I have a glacier outside my house that used to go all the way down to the highway and now it’s 500 metres higher up in the mountain and that’s only in 15 years. Things are moving fast.
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