In the busy lifestyles we lead we often ignore our most instinctual need: nature. It grounds us, it connects us, it re-energises us. I’m on a quest to return to nature and to invite small moments into my day which encourages me to live as nature intended. Check out the blog post below for some quick and easy tips to help you reconnect!
Summertime is finally arriving. We have no excuse to not make the most of it and enjoy the warmth! Since finishing the final semester of university for this year, I’ve been spending more and more free time in the outdoors and honestly it’s done wonders. I love feeling connected with nature in my garden by planting the vegetable patch and caring for the fruit trees. I love how our menagerie of animals always join us outside too as if we’re finally joining them in their space. You’ll often find me out tending to the garden or checking on our flower beds with at least 3 or 4 of our cats and dogs out there with me. It feels like a great way to take a break and take a breath.
As I’ve had more free time, I’ve begun to listen to my body and nature's timings a lot more closely. However, the habits I’m picking up I believe should be prioritised whether we have a free calendar or only 5 minutes spare in our morning. Reconnecting with nature shouldn’t feel like a chore, it should be a great way to get back to our roots and slow down for a little. It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle.
Here are a few things I’ve been doing to help myself reconnect with nature:
1. Keep my curtains open at night (or wake up with sunlight) - this is especially easy in the winter with daylight savings, but I love falling asleep with my blinds open and a window slightly ajar. The thought behind this is that I’m syncing my sleeping patterns to the waking and setting of the sun, while also letting in the noises of the birds or trees in my area. While this may not work for someone who needs zero light in their room to fall asleep, I encourage you to give it a try! I find it really helps me wake up naturally early as I tend to be woken by the sunlight rather than my alarm and once I am awake I find it easier to get up and start my day as the sunshine immediately stops my melatonin production.
2. Look outside before your look at your phone: there is a common tendency to grab our phones first in the morning. I’ve recently put an Amazon Alexa device in my bedroom so I no longer use my phone as an alarm. Honestly, I shouldn’t have ANY devices in my room (not even an Alexa) but this is a good middle-ground for me at the moment. Once I wake, I like to regulate myself by looking outside, taking a moment to become really present with my surroundings, and listening in for the birds. This has broken my habit of grabbing my phone to turn off my alarm - which usually turns into a scroll session on Instagram.
3. Check the weather outside before checking on your phone: in the morning when I’m picking clothing to wear for the day, I like to make sure I’ve looked outside and felt the temperature. I tend to end up checking the weather app on my phone for the forecast, but initially, I like to get outside and get in tune with how the day is looking. This is another great way to get in sync!
4. Add outside time to your morning routine: this could be anything from eating your breakfast on the deck, reading your book in the sunshine, having a coffee in the garden with your partner, or tending to the veggies. I love heading out to pick fresh vegetables and fruit and water the flower beds. The animals come with me and it’s just a lovely way to start the day.
5. Eat with the seasons: I’m a big advocate for eating seasonally. It’s one of the reasons why I made our seasonal produce printable which you can grab for free here. I also believe that the fruit which is available in the current season is designed to best provide you with the nutrients which our bodies need at the time. In winter, I stray away from cool, water-based fruits and vegetables and head towards heavier, denser ones like pumpkin. I eat warm, more filling foods and only consume warm beverages - including warm water rather than cold! In the summer, I enjoy fresh berries, lighter vegetables and whatever fruits are available in the garden. I encourage you to head to your local farmers market rather than the supermarket to ensure you’re getting fresh, seasonal produce rather than international imports!
6. Bring the outside in: there are elements of nature which I’m sure we all have a preference for. I love the warm sunshine and floral scents. Which is why I love having fresh flowers in the house, and fire elements like candles or the fireplace going. If you love the water, prioritise having a bath or having a long shower. Become really present with being in water rather than rushing through the experience. If you love being in the earth, make sure you put aside time to be in the grass or head to the park. Surround yourself with the elements of nature that you love, both in your home and in your schedule.
7. Take a nature break: Just a five-minute break in nature can boost performance in attention and memory tests by 20%. The same results are not achieved when taking a break to have lunch with friends or a walk down a city street. People who spend time in nature are less likely to suffer from depression and anxiety too! In a world being swarmed with technology, hectic schedules, and less downtime, we’re becoming increasingly detached from nature. We’re missing out on the opportunities nature gives us to enhance our creativity and cognitive capabilities. Nature is also a remedy for boredom, by giving our attention to nature our curiosity is sparked and leads us to novel ideas and creative solutions. Get outside, ground yourself and let the creativity flow!
We must remember that we came from the earth so it’s only natural that we must return to it to ground and connect ourselves. Even if you only have a few spare minutes, take every opportunity you can to get outside and reconnect.
Eat lunch outside at work, walk to the market rather than drive, or simply playing with the kids outside on the deck are all easy shifts we can make which allow us to live our lives but OUTSIDE.
What are you doing to reconnect yourself with nature? How do you feel once you’ve made the effort to get outside?
Share with us your thoughts in the comment section below!
From our home to yours,
Hi there! Thanks for checking out the Live Lively blog. I am so excited to share my passion for productivity, personal growth and wellbeing!