Life is hard, man. I bet every single one of us could list off ten things worrying us right at this very moment. But what if I was to tell you that there is something right outside your door that can get rid of all that worry and have you feeling 100 per cent in no time?
And what if I was to tell you it was free? (So yep, not cocaine.) You don’t even have to exercise or diet for it!
The answer to all your problems
The solution is spending time in nature. I mean really spending time in nature – no phones or tablets. Nature is the world’s greatest healer. If there is one thing I in this world that I would swear black and blue, this is it. Call me a hippy, but trust me, I have put it to the test hundreds of times in my life and it ALWAYS works.
Will it change your external situation? Not likely. What it will do is calm you down and help put things in perspective. It will help you to remember the important things in life and to let all your worries subside. It’s when we are in this state of mind, that we can see light at the end of the tunnel and find solutions to our perceived problems.
All it takes is 15 minutes a day. People spend longer looking at themselves in the mirror.
It’s as easy as this
I’m lucky enough to have a little grassed area and creek at the end of my street so I just go and sit down there for a little while every afternoon. If it’s after work, I usually go down as a mega-bitch and come back as an angel. The effects are really that drastic.
You don’t have to live near a creek to spend time in nature. It can be a park, or under a tree. It can even be in your front yard while you stare up at the clouds. Soil/grass under feet and greenery are really the only necessities in suburbia. The beach, the ocean and lakes also work wonders if you can get there.
Here’s what you do:
- Stop what you are doing and affirm that you are going to do something ‘just for you’ for fifteen minutes. Advise all those around you to kindly leave you the fuck alone for the next little while. (Okay, maybe not use the ‘F’ word if you are talking to your kids. Bosses, friends and random people in the street are fair game.) Leave your phone and anything else which is likely to distract you behind.
- Find a good spot. By good, I mean somewhere quiet without green ants or where birds are likely to shit on you.
- Sit down, relax and breathe deeply.
- Notice all of the beautiful, natural things going on around you.
- Turn back into the cool, calm and collected You.
- Go back and face the world.
Nature gets us out of our heads and into reality. (Our heads are, of course, where all of our problems are created and reside.) It awakens our senses and allows us to again see what is happening around us in the present moment. Birds singing, flowers in bloom, the feeling of grass beneath your feet. All primordial things, but when was the last time you took any notice of any of it?
Everyone’s a winner
My reason for caring about everyone spending time in nature is kind of selfish. I’m an environmental professional you see, so the more people we have caring about the great outdoors, the easier my job becomes. My dream is for everyone to understand and appreciate how wondrously magnificent our natural world is so that everyone will want to protect it.
So it’s a win-win, really. You spend time in nature, nature helps you by making you feel wonderful, and you help nature by giving a shit about it. Simple!
Do you have any special spots in nature that you can escape to?
SUch a wonderful idea!
I love the beach and water. I find it so peaceful. Just to lay there and smell the salt and listen to the waves.
The beach and the water do it for me too! I’m even considering a late afternoon trip today…. X
Yes! Totally agree. Being outside in fresh air and in nature is totally restorative. I swim in the sea and it’s where I feel most alive. Aiming to spend hours outside each day, not always achievable but a good aspiration.
Yep, saltwater does wonders!
I love this! Being away from your phone is very foreign though isn’t it! I live 2.5 hrs away from the beach but everytime I get back it’s magic! I’ll try ditching the phone next time xx
Thanks Jo! I need to remind myself about the phone thing too every now and again 🙂