Needing to self-isolate over the past few weeks has forced most of us to stay at home. While spending time indoors can be used productively for all sorts of tasks, a lot of us are excited about getting back outdoors to breath in some fresh air and feel the sun on our skin.
Getting that right amount of sunshine helps our body to produce vitamin D and is great for our immune system as well as for our moods. Spending time outdoors clears and refreshes our minds and connecting to nature can benefit our health and can boost happiness.
But how should we be spending time outside?
Nobody knows better than you what your own body needs. For some people, it can be that walk along the beach that brings the extra refreshment to their mind. For others, it could be a downhill bike ride in the bush. Spending time in nature might just be those ten minutes a day in which we avoid the busyness and tasks of everyday life, or it might be a weekend getaway in the middle of Daintree rainforest. Either way, spending time in nature enables our bodies to reconnect and to put things into perspective. Being surrounded by nature stops us from getting distracted or feeling the need to stimulate ourselves with the latest news.
Obviously, getting outside can also help you keep fit. As soon as we step outside, we move our muscles and exercise. And while we might be exhausted at the end of the day of hiking, kayaking or climbing, we will be all the more thankful for our better sleep later on. A good appetite, pleasant emotions throughout the day and overall calmness are also benefits of walks, light sports, exercises or camping in nature. It’s no wonder that in the evenings we’ve spent time in nature we land in bed in a good state of mind and body and sleep tight!
Spending time in nature can bring us more energy in the long term. Walking in the fresh air enhances concentration, giving your mind a break from all the tasks awaiting at home, restores our mood and has a relaxation effect for our body and mind.
Being in nature also gives us the ability to embrace the space around us with all our senses. We inevitably stumble across different smells, lights, sounds and feelings. It’s a good way to practice mindfulness and strengthen our connection with ourselves and our surroundings.
Nature simultaneously provides us with a recognition of complexity and sense of simplicity of the world we live in. It wakes up our most inner feelings and instincts. It’s a completely individual experience, and is often exactly what we need in our busy schedules between work, family, sport, meeting with friends and our seemingly ever increasing lists of things to do.
When was the last time you spent quality time in nature?
[Cover image: Pemberton Discovery Tours (Advanced Ecotourism certified, Green Travel Leader)