They say that one of the best things anyone can do for their mental well-being is spend more time in nature. It makes sense; we are part of nature after all. Living in inner-city apartment buildings or even in the suburbs is quite an unnatural state of being, even if it does provide us with most of the comforts and conveniences we need.
Don’t worry, no one will recommend that you go and live in a camper van in the middle of the woods, even if that could be a nice way to spend a small getaway with a couple of friends. However, when we do try to spend more time in nature, as suggested, we tend to stick to basic options. We might walk through the park or walk our dog along a nature trail, and then return home.
That’s a lovely way to spend an afternoon, of course, and a great idea. But what if you feel as though there’s a better way to get out in nature? How exactly can you orient your lifestyle around this, without feeling like you’re just scratching the surface? What if you hope for this without having to move into the middle of the countryside while you’re trying to keep a tolerable commute to your daily job?
In this post, we’ll discuss all of that and more.
Art Is Key
Artists from antiquity up to today have all taken inspiration from nature. Even some of the earliest cave paintings we’ve found show pictures of people and animals, of course, both elements of nature in their own right.
As such, joining this timeless tradition could be a great idea if you hope to spend more time outside. You might pick up an easel, some watercolors, and just spend some time in front of a landscape you really love. Head there at sunrise or sunset for the most beautiful vista, but, of course, just being out there is enough.
Alternatively, you might opt for photography, hiking, fishing with a Sanger Boat Dealer to get you started, or, perhaps, you just want to spend more time in your garden, arranging your flower displays, which is a form of artistic craft in itself. When we spend more time training our eye and trying to represent the world we love or want to bring into being, we tend to have a great outlet for our creative passions, in the most beautiful surroundings we can enjoy.
Mindful Indoor Activities Count, Too
Not all nature-oriented activities need to take place outdoors. You can still enjoy indoor activities that connect you to nature, be that curating a wall garden, opening your French doors during a summer’s day, sitting on your chair and reading, or even growing a herb garden for your home cooking experimentation.
After all, we tend to think of nature as large landscapes or woods we explore and camp in, but that’s not all it is. You might develop a budding crystal collection you keep proudly on a shelf in your bedroom, or maybe you’ll get into woodworking with reclaimed wood that helps you add your own soulful furniture to your house over time. As you can see, the possibilities tend to be quite open.
A Camping Hobby
Not everyone is into camping, but we’re willing to bet that if you haven’t experienced this as an adult, now is the time to do it. As children, we can tend to feel a little restless when camping, that is unless we have a nearby beach, play park, or whatever other stimulation we can find nearby.
As an adult, you tend to find value in peace and relaxation, especially in slowing down, taking some time to breathe nature in, and think about the world outside. A camping hobby can help you connect with people you go with, or even go alone and read books under the stars.
Camping tends to be great for our mental health also because a lack of mirrors, disconnecting from online life (and especially social media), and allowing your mind to rest without constant engagement can be a very worthwhile activity to take part in.
Get Involved in Conservation Efforts
It’s easy to feel worried about the digitization and fragmentation of modern life. While communities still exist and people still care about their surroundings, it can be harder to find this or figure out how to contribute.
Here, we can achieve two ideals at once. Focusing on conservation efforts, be that in replanting trees in your local environment, helping your local authority clean up your parks, or even contributing to a communal allotment can help you put your own stamp on nature and help it grow and thrive.
Sometimes, charitable organizations will run volunteer programs where you can go and provide your free labor for a day in order to help out your surrounding environment, and that might include anything from helping to cut down weeds and invasive plants in an area to cleaning up parks in impoverished communities as a larger group. This is totally optional, of course, but if you hope to do something different, feel good about your day-to-day efforts and spend time in nature; there’s most likely nothing more worthwhile you could be doing with your time.
Help the Local Wildlife
It can be nice to court the local fauna, be that curating a nice birdbath or bird feeder in your garden, birdwatching, dog walking, which always gives more reasons for going out into the town, or even just keeping certain pets, like rabbits, in a lovely outside hutch they can thrive in (just make sure they’re protected through the winter or can come inside).
Wildlife is an essential element of nature, and spending your time with it in a sustaining, appreciative fashion tends to be a wholesome and enjoyable activity for many.
With this advice, you’re sure to orient your lifestyle around nature in the best possible way. If you’re having fun, then we’re sure you’re on the right path.