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4 Ways Hammocks are Amazing for Introverted and Neurodivergent Outdoor People

Updated: Oct 23, 2023

a picture of a persons feet, the person is in a hammock

*My intention is not to put down tents. I know that there are places that have no trees to use and/ or some places do not allow you to hang up a hammock because they don't want the trees damaged. So it's important to have some padding for the trees. It's also good to keep a tent handy incase of a storm. So sometimes tents are a necessity and risks do come with hammocks. Although I did study outdoor leadership and psychology in college, I am not an expert. Please do your own research before buying any equipment.

Easy Set Up

I think that the hammock was a gift to people who love the outdoors but may not fit the stereotype; For those of us who operate a little differently. I'm speaking in generalities here. I know that everyone is different and what I say will not be true for everyone. I love the hammock because it is so easy to set up. Hammocks are Amazing! Setting up a hammock rewards you at the end.

Woman stretching her arms to the sky in a hammock

Using it! It's great for those of us that can get bored quickly. Tents have no fun reward at the end. It is just a place to sleep. Also with tents, setting up can be more frustrating by comparison. Even if you have done it before, activities with multiple steps and pieces can feel rage-inducing for certain types of people. It was always frustrating for me to deal with the poles, stakes, and flaps. It was incredibly terrifying those times when I realized I miscounted the pieces before leaving and like… now what!!!!??? Why am I like this? Then I had to shamefully pick a stick that looked sturdy enough and try to sub that in for a steak. If you are reading this article you may be one of those people you know that get easily embarrassed in social situations. With a hammock, you bypass all that stress. You might be a little unsure about setting it up the first time, but once you do it it's pretty easy. There are also hammock tents you can buy if you are someone who needs a little extra protection.

Gives You Adventure Cred

While I was taking my outdoor classes in college, I struggled to find my voice amongst a bunch of dudes who had all the fancy gear. Their parents have been taking them climbing since they were two (I went on nature walks all the time with my family but that is about the extent of what my parents would do). I remember my first outdoor trip in college, I noticed all the experienced people had hammocks, and the ones with less experience had tents. Yikes! No one said anything out loud, but it was an obvious elephant in the woods. By the time our next trip rolled around, I had purchased a hammock (and a few other things). It made a difference in how the group perceived me. I felt like I was more legit and my thoughts and opinions held more weight. Whether the better treatment from them was in my head or real, the hammock gave me a nice little confidence boost. I still struggled to be taken seriously, but it was a step in the right direction. In the American world of chatter, noise, competition, and neurotypical preference, people like you and me have a harder time being taken seriously as valuable leaders. We are constantly being shoved into a horrid square box, when we are triangles. Then we are told since we don’t fit in that box it's our moral failing. So go get your hammock(real or metaphorical) and go be the extraordinary leader you know you are!

All Social none of the Anxiety

One of the things I love most about my hammock is that it's an instant easy icebreaker. Whether it's a family get-together or an outdoor trip, people will want to use my hammock or push each other in the hammock, etc. It's so great! I can set my hammock up near the group and enjoy everyone without the pressure of entertaining the group. If you are someone who gets accused of not being social enough or feels exhausted when you talk all day a hammock can be a lifesaver. It can be hard to steal a moment away from the group just to have time to yourself that's not going to the bathroom; especially when you are out in the woods. I'll just rock back and forth and just be without feeling like I am “ON.” I can participate a little bit, sit back and read or play ukulele and no one thinks anything of it.

A man and woman are talking, the man is in a hammock

Hammocks are Regulating

Just rocking back and forth just that motion can be very calming and regulating. Planning a trip and keeping track of everything can feel overwhelming at times to some people. Or sometimes it's just my thoughts and worries about things unrelated. Sometimes, I get sad from so often being misunderstood. The rhythm of my hammock helps me deal with the anger and frustration I may be dealing with.

Rocking in a hammock can help bring you back to the present moment. It picks you up to a new vantage point and you notice things about the surroundings and people that you might not have noticed before while completely on the ground. These are the precious experiences people go out into nature to find. It can help you feel like a kid again. It allows your brain to remember the more innocent part of life swinging on the playground as a kid.

A man reading a book in a hammock

This is why I think that hammocks are the absolute best! What do you think? Is there anything you would add? Let me know =)

A girl in a hammock, petting her dog

Hi! I am Paulie D. from Notes from My Hammock. I write about living authentically, mindfulness, wellness, and self-expression.

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