Practicing Mindfulness in Nature by Linda Cammarata, RN, RYTDecember 11, 2013 at 12:23 pm | Posted in Mind Body Medicine, Mindfulness, Self-Regulation, Stress Management | Leave a comment
A very natural and simple way to experience mindfulness is to spend time in nature on a daily basis. Learning to take the time to listen to falling rain, observe the colors of nature as they appear to your eyes, and smell the air, sea, or earth are opportunities for cultivating your ability to relax into the present moment. Being in the moment allows you to become aware of the many beautiful changes occurring during every moment of your precious life.
Observing the light as it changes from daylight to dusk can influence and balance your natural biological rhythms. Exploring your own internal nature can teach you how your energy changes with your moods, activities, what you focus upon, and with your intentions. Being in nature can profoundly drop you right back into the present moment when you’re paying close attention.
The high stimulation of modern culture has impaired our ability to self-regulate, connect to nature, and create the space needed to learn the art of being in the present moment. We are overly stimulated by excessive light, food, sugar, caffeine, noise, and technology. This can be depleting, leaving us feeling empty, and needing to nourish ourselves. As we engage our senses, we return to the nature of our own human body, the internal natural environment that is always here for us; we learn that self-regulation can occur without excessive external stimulation. Taking the time to reconnect with nature may help us relieve our stress, inspire hope, balance our energy, and infuse joy into our life. I invite you to go outside today for a breath of fresh air to relax and take a look into the natural world that surrounds you and is also always there, inside of you.
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(with contributing editors Heather Butts, JD, MPH, MA, Larry Cammarata, Ph.D., and Ed Glauser, M.Ed., N.C.C., LPC)