I want to share something very important with you, something that most definitely has saved my life. It’s not really a secret, but something that tends to be overlooked:
SPEND TIME OUTSIDE !
Wether you are resting, walking, running or working in the great outdoors and on the soily earth, you will benefit from the deeply grounding and relaxing therapy it brings.
After so many years slaving in an office, 9 to 5 & five or six days a week, I never imaged how much fulfilment I would have in my life doing the kind of work I do. Years later I’m still on the fields and I’m not bored. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not always easy, but the fruits of my labour are immense.
You reap what you sow
Photo: Forest walk on the Isle of Arran.
by Kieran Robertson
I was working for just over a decade in corporate & digital marketing and spending for most hours of my life indoors at a desk. Ironically, I thought that earning a big pay-check would give me the time to relax, but it simply wasn’t the case. Bills, costs, travelling, ready meals or home deliveries… Often the more you earn the more you are likely spend to compensate on the lost hours working and completely exhausted. Just to sum a few of the many benefits:
1. You move your body
Who needs to pay for a gym membership? You can run around, climb up trees, swim in the sea, roll down a grassy hill. The best advise I got is to like a child. Because truly, adults are just all overgrown children, many with inflated egos.
Gardening is one of my favourite hobbies, but spending time in a forest or parking up the camper by an empty beach is what I love to do. Remember to sit in the stillness of nature, pray, meditate or reflect.
2. You learn to observe nature
You get to watch the plants grow as you slow your fast modern self down to their pace. You can see the insects dance away in the sunlight while the birds sing the most beautiful of songs. It’s relaxing, revitalising and just overall wonderful. And they say fairies don’t exist?
What I remember as a child was how fascinated I was about all insects and plants. It’s something I never lost, but somehow life just that curiosity up with modern stresses. We all have this ability to slow down and observe.
In fact observation is the root of science. Science, originally from the latin scire, meaning to “Know”. We are all born with the ability to learn, observe and cultivate knowledge through our experiences. Nature is the best playground for this.
3. You learn to grow, eat or use plants as food and medicine
If you learn to grow or gather your own food and medicine, then you’ve learnt a vital skill you’ll keep forever. It’s empowering to know these things. In fact, being able to gather food is a primary skill required for survival. You wouldn’t need to rely on anyone to feed you. When societies crumbled throughout human history, the survivors were the ones who had this knowledge. But you can benefit in different ways just by even learning to identify plants and training your intuition to find them and discover their secrets.
4. You learn how to slow down time
Or at least the perception of time. You see, when you allow yourself to bathe in the stillness of nature and ground yourself (bare foot!) on the earth something amazing happens. As you become more presently, more connected with your environment in that moment, the perception of time changes and appears to be slower. You feel calmer and even your brain waves change to a more meditative space.
If I was to earn £1 every time I heard someone say: “I wish i could work outside / spend time in the garden” I would be a billionaire. As humans, just as other animals, we have the natural instinct to go outside and play with nature. That’s why we love that musty smell of soil (it’s the humus!) when the rain hits dry ground or the smell of freshly mown grass. It’s generally good for us! Most modern humans hibernate in a sterile room, like an office with stale air or an overheated living room, sheltered and weakly yet we are still surprised when we talk about being allergic to things.
I admit, I don’t earn even a quarter of what I was on during my corporate work, but I’m far richer in health and happiness, physically and mentally. I have satisfaction every day that I work; each day is different. My anxieties, life stresses and even my financial worries have been carried away with the wind. I’m not saying everyone must do what I did and leave their career to live a life outdoors (I mean.. why not?) but even to spend a little more time, every day, in the great outdoors may benefit your body, mood and other aspects of your life more than you can imagine.
My word of advice is this: If you dream about being outside, follow the call. It’s the best thing you will ever do in your life 🌿💚
Photo: Meditation at a sacred cove by the amazing Kieran Robertson
This article is intended for educational purposes and contains general information so that readers may learn new things, and with the information to empower and allow room for informed choices. However, if you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention from your doctor or qualified naturopathic practitioner (such as a registered herbalist). You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website.