We all know that getting outside and spending time in nature feels amazing, inside and out. The sun on your skin, fresh air in your lungs, and the sound of salty waves on the ocean can instantly bring you into the present moment to lower anxiety and boost happiness. It's no secret that it supports your whole wellbeing!
There is a growing body of research that points to just that, according to Jim Robbins and the article Ecopsychology: How Immersion in Nature Benefits Your Health. He further explains how nature has magical powers and contributes to our daily health.
But what if you don't live or travel consistently to wilderness areas and wide open spaces? Can you still receive those healing perks? Where do you go in an urban environment like a big city to soak up nature?
I recently visited a friend in Rochester, New York where the focus was social events and celebrations - mostly indoors. Being such a nature lover and always feeling refreshed and level-headed in wild areas, I was excited to be creative with how and where I would receive the healing properties of nature.
Here are the ways I stayed connected with the earth to feel grounded, peaceful, and happy while urban traveling.
I visited an indoor botanical garden to take time for myself and recharge in between socials events. The old, colorful plants dated back to the 1920's and proved to be a fun and heart warming place to be.
A group of us went on a slow, couple hour walk in the neighborhood to admire the changing fall leaves and unique homes. Not only did I connect with the big trees with the wind blowing but I had great conversations with those I walked with.
There were left over flowers from my friend's wedding so I decided to put some in the bathroom where I was staying. It brought color to the space and a smile to my face every time I went in.
Being near a new Great Lake in the midwest, I felt a pull to jump in the lake for some cold water therapy and a proper introduction. As always, it was the perfect mental reset button.
On a quiet morning with a meditation and yoga session, I placed a small, green house plant next to my mat. When I opened my eyes and gave me something to focus on. The texture, color and aliveness of the plant reminded me of my true nature: to be ALIVE and vibrant.
Later in the evening, a group of friends headed outside for a campfire to eat dinner and play music. Although it was chilly to sit outside and threatened to rain, I had a bigger sense of relief being under the trees and clouds with the glow of the fire.
Discovering big and small ways to bring nature into your urban adventure is endless. Sometimes you don't have to go far to enjoy the many healing properties of nature.