Fly fishing is more than just a recreational activity; for many, it’s a source of peace, tranquility, and healing. Our guest, Matt Harmon, embodies this truth as he shares his personal journey of managing bipolar type two and ADHD through fly fishing in our latest podcast episode.
Born into a large family of 15 children, Matt always had a deep connection with the outdoors. His childhood experiences fishing and camping with his father and brothers instilled in him a love for nature. This love eventually became a lifeline for him when he faced mental health struggles later in life.
After moving to Utah to pursue music, Matt had to confront his mental health issues head-on. With no insurance and limited resources, he found solace and a form of therapy in the outdoors. Through camping trips, the thrill of a ‘100 Fish Day’, and the satisfaction of tying a perfect fly, Matt mended the fabric of his mental health.
Matt’s love for fly fishing isn’t just about the catch. It’s about the journey – the scientific process of matching the line weight to the rod, the art of tying a fly, the excitement of feeling the fish on the line, and the camaraderie of the community. His experience extends beyond the personal, as he uses his platforms, Royal Wulff Outdoors and his YouTube channel, to spread his mantra of ‘finding peace in the trees’ and ‘fishing saves lives’.
Fly fishing has given Matt an avenue to love himself, be present for his family, and connect with others who share similar stories. The outdoors serves as his escape, a place to clear his mind and take a break from negative emotions. It’s a form of therapy that’s not only affordable but also deeply enriching.
In the end, Matt’s story isn’t just about fly fishing. It’s about resilience, self-discovery, and the healing power of nature. It’s about finding joy in the simple things and using that joy as a tool to overcome life’s challenges. His story serves as a beacon of hope for others struggling with mental health issues and reinforces the idea that there is more than one path to healing.
So whether you’re an avid fly fisherman or just someone seeking inspiration, Matt’s story is a testament to the power of nature and the human spirit. It’s proof that sometimes, all we need to find peace and happiness is right outside our door. It’s an invitation to all of us to explore the world around us, engage with nature, and find our own form of healing.
Fly fishing may not be a conventional form of therapy, but for Matt Harmon and many others, it’s a lifeline. It’s a testament to the healing power of nature and a reminder that sometimes, the best medicine is just a fishing rod and a beautiful day outdoors.