emotion · environment · mental health

Giving my brain time to breathe

The M54 motorway near Wellington viewed from t...
Off into the wild blue yonder this week. Image via Wikipedia

I will be on vacation this week, as sort of a decompression from summer and respite before I jump full on into Fall, Winter, and all that ensues.

I intend to spend as much time as possible in nature, listening, smelling, seeing, and overall experiencing the amazing world that is around me. Spotting animals, smelling trees, water, flowers, and moss, feeling the crunch of leaves and rocks beneath my feet, hearing the wind blow through the leaves and listen for animal calls, and taste the heat in the hot afternoon sun and cold at early dawn.

I encourage everyone to take 20 minutes sometime between now and when I get back to just go outside, find a comfortable, quiet place to sit – under a tree, near some water, on the street corner near your house – and just listen, smell, taste, and watch. Listen to all the noises. What’s the closest noise, what’s the farthest noise? How many animals can you spot? How many different smells can you pick up? Breathe fully into your lungs and slowly let the air out, feeling it work its way through your nose, throat, and lungs.

Give yourself this 20 minute vacation, even just once this week, and I guarantee your environment will feel fuller, richer, and you’ll feel more in tune with your surroundings.

Enjoy!