By Diana Proemm, CTRS
For as long as I can remember, I have been playing outside. In our days of digital technology, I have a hard time shutting off. When I was little, I remember my mom grounding me and making me go to my room. I also remember, that I was outside within the hour as I’m pretty sure I drove my mom crazy until I was allowed back outside. I remember chasing lightening bugs, lounging on a large rock with my best friend bored our of our minds, but we were outside all day.
This started my life in outdoors. Being outside in nature is where I have always felt at home. It brings me back to whole. Our life throws us curve balls, such as a tree being swayed by the wind, but it stands strong and does not fall over. With the help of nature time, you can continue to stand tall and strong when the winds pick up.
- Improves Your Mental Game
When I am feeling overloaded and the stress and anxiety are building I know it’s time to get grounded. I do this by delving myself into nature. It’s suggested by the National Academy of Science that spending time in the outdoors reduces the levels of mental illness and depression. As a mountain gal who recently moved to the big city of San Antonio, Texas, my first initiative was to find my happy nature places. Going outside into nature, shut off my digital devices and let my thoughts run wild. I get the body moving at a rapid pace, such as walking briskly to help tire out the nervous system, and the problems I once had, become clear or fade in the distance behind me.
- Improves Your Physical Fitness
Doctors are now prescribing time in the outdoors as soaking in Vitamin D from the sun and the fresh air can prevent diseases such as heart disease and osteoporosis. It can also be a nice break from your normal routine if you enjoy jumping on a treadmill before or after work. Most importantly focus on your breath, feel the contraction and expansion of your lungs and diaphragm, and bring good clean air into your body.
- Recharges Your Holistic Batteries
How do you feel after a weekend away? I have personally come back from a day hike feeling like I was gone for a week, and completely rejuvenated. In the Journal of Environmental Psychology article states, “Being outdoors was associated with greater vitality, a relation that was mediated by the presence of natural elements.” When your computer/phone/Ipad batteries need recharged, there is a good chance your whole being needs to be recharged as well. Taking a walk in nature and giving yourself a break will give you back your energy and find clarity.
- Promotes Creativity
When I become overloaded and feeling like I’m not functioning at optimal speed, I know it’s time for a mental and physical break. We spend so much time on our devices these days, and forget there is another world going on around us. When I need a creative boost, I take to the woods and venture on a nice long walk or trail run, and focus on the sounds of nature. Leaving all digital devices behind, so I can hear the birds sing, the wind blowing through the trees, and let my eyes be enamored by the colorful wildflowers. I come back fresh minded and ready to create a masterpiece after a brain break.
Don’t wait, it’s time to get out there and get ‘er done!
Diana is an adventuress, photographer, and is traveling whenever and wherever she can.