We all know how important it is to get outside. Our bodies and minds crave interaction with nature, and feeding our souls with such interactions is one of the very best things we can do for our physical and mental health.
Unfortunately, busy schedules and city living do not lend themselves well to lazy days spent enjoying the afternoon sun. All too often, people in this day and age will go weeks (or even months) without ever spending more than five minutes at a time outside.
This is a terrible position to be in, for a variety of reasons. Our bodies need to see sunshine in order to absorb the ever-important vitamin D, our minds need to have fresh air in order to think clearly, and our souls need the peace and serenity of watching a sunrise, or taking a hike in a quiet woods, in order to feel fulfilled. A person who is well-connected with nature tends to also have a good connection with themselves as well. Everyone deserves to have this.
So how can you go about getting some quality time in the outdoors without completely adjusting your lifestyle? Well, there are actually a variety of little things you can do to connect with nature, despite a bustling lifestyle:
Bring the Outdoors In
If you find yourself stuck inside on a beautiful day, try bringing that beautiful day inside. Turn off the air conditioning or the heat, open the windows, and enjoy the fresh air. This can be done in an office or at home, and is an easy way to increase the amount of vitamin D you are getting.
To take things a bit further, consider putting a hidden french door into your home. This will allow you to open the house up even more, and all of that fresh air and sunshine is sure to perk up your mood and energize you.
On those days when the weather is nice and you would like to spend more time outside, you might think about leaving a few minutes early and walking to work or the store. By adding walking into your daily routine, you will increase your time outdoors and add a good amount of exercise to your day.
If you have trouble walking long distances due to back pain, leg pain, or other health issues, this trick can also be used on a smaller scale even when you drive somewhere. Simply park the car at the far end of the parking lot and walk inside. This is an amazing way to increase your time outdoors in small increments while remaining productive.
Create an Irresistible Outdoor Space
Let's face it, nobody wants to spend time in an unkempt backyard. If your backyard is looking a little run down, it might be time to give it a facelift. Even if you don't have a ton of time on your hands, you can always hire people to do all of the work for you, and then you'll have a yard you will actually want to spend extra time in.
Some ideas of ways to make your yard more inviting include...
- Adding a small pond
- Planting flowers and trees
- Putting in a gazebo
- Placing a table and chairs in the yard
These things will encourage you to go outside more often for meals and morning coffee, and soon enough you will see the benefits of hanging out in nature anytime you get a chance.
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Seeing the world is some of the best encouragement that exists to get someone outside. After all, when you are in a new place, there are new things to see and do, and many of them require stepping into nature. From walking from one place to the next, to hanging out in parks and gardens, travel offers all sort of opportunities to get out into the big green world. Best of all, the newness of it all will make these experiences exciting rather than a chore.
There are several ways to ensure your travel actually gets you into the great outdoors. These include booking a room in a big city (where walking is often the ideal mode of transportation), looking for outdoor attractions, and adding a few nights of camping into every adventure.
Take Your Work Outside
As technology continues to advance, more and more employers are allowing their staff the opportunity to work remotely. This setup works particularly well for anyone doing the majority of their work over the internet, but it can be applied to a great many of the office jobs out there.
Remote work (AKA "telecommuting") can help employees in many ways. The obvious benefits of remote work include more family time, less gas used, and in some cases, a more flexible schedule.
Another great benefit? The ability to work wherever you please! This means a person who is working remotely has the freedom to work outdoors, something that can actually help improve focus while simultaneously improving the overall health of the employee. Whether they decide to work from their own backyard or a national park, telecommuting individuals are sure to love the freedom to create their own beautiful, outdoor office.
If you do not already have the freedom to work remotely, this is something to bring up to your place of employment. Who knows? Maybe you too could be doing your work while still enjoying nature.
These are just some of the ways you can bring a bit of nature into your hectic life. By keeping an open mind and always keeping your eyes peeled for new opportunities, you are sure to find a number of ways to ensure you are getting that special time with nature that your body craves.