Are you feeling like you are caught up in the hustle and bustle of daily life? Do you feel yourself longing to get outside, but you always run out of time to do it? Here are five quick and easy ways that you can deepen your connection with nature today!
1. Buy a houseplant!
Many people incorporate plants into their interior design, and for good reason. Studies show that views of nature throughout the day can decrease experiences of depression, anxiety, anger, and fatigue by up to 40%! How can you ensure that you have easy access to nature every day? Buy a houseplant (or two.... or 30 ;)). Especially if you work in an office setting and don't have windows with views of nature near, keeping a small plant on your desk can provide you with the exposure to nature that you might not have even known you needed!
2. Do something that you would normally do indoors and take it outside instead.
There are so many things that we typically do indoors that could be done outside instead. This is a great way to get outside for a few moments, especially if you are feeling like you can't possibly put aside the time to go outside just to be outside. Some examples of this include eating a meal outside or taking a meeting or doing other computer work outside. These are great ways of getting outside while not feeling like you have to put your life on hold!
3. Go on a walk.
Why not incorporate walks into your daily routine? This could be a walk before work/school in the morning, or an evening walk before bed. Walks can be a great way to connect with community as well! This can be a wonderful opportunity to catch up with friends and loved ones, get outside with a pet, or provide quiet space alone to process the events of the day-- all depending on what you need.
4. Keep it simple!
Let's make sure that getting outside is achievable, even if you only have five minutes in your day to devote to the task. Getting outside doesn't have to be some big adventure. It can be as simple as standing on your balcony for a few minutes or sitting in your yard or a shared community space. Keeping it simple can help you ensure that you are getting all the benefits of a bit of fresh air and downtime in nature without having it feel overwhelming.
One of the most effective ways that you can connect with nature is to truly be present in nature. This is easier said than done, especially in today's age of constant connection through social media, texting, etc. I really encourage you to carve out intentional time to be connect with nature. When you are outside, put down your phone, turn off your music, unplug, and just BE.
No matter how you choose to engage with nature, celebrate the fact that you are carving out space and time in your busy schedule to slow down and be present for a few moments. This is a beautiful act of self-care and with practice, can deepen your connection to yourself and others!
McKenna Cromwell, MA is pre-licensed on the Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor track. She is passionate about helping people live deeper, more meaningful lives that are in alignment with the life that they want to live.