There is a deep calling inside of us to get out and connect with nature. It is in our essence to have a deep connection with this planet, with the elements, the cycles, the growth and the death. We are one with it all and over the past few decades we have lost touch with our deep connection and buried it somewhere in our psyche. We may have buried it but can you feel it bursting to the surface? Can you feel that visceral pull towards nature? The earth calling to us to reconnect; to ground and to be free? It is deeply ingrained in all of us because we are all in this together.
There has been a rise in energies lately and both Vicki and I have been feeling it. It’s like a yearning in the pit of your stomach; a strong desire for more connectedness, something beyond the daily grind. Our souls are asking us to pay attention and to connect with our natural world, with a sort of urgency. As a culture too often focused on money and consuming, we have become detached, distracted and sidetracked from what truly makes us happy and whole: nature. As I sit and write this, I am outside in my backyard, taking in the sounds of the birds and the lushness of the trees and grass, and it makes me so happy. Take this as a reminder to disengage from life’s worries and get outside.
Both Vicki and myself are hippies at heart (we admit it), so we do what we can to keep our connection with nature strong. There are times though, of course, when we become disconnected and when we do, there are simple practices we turn to to bring back that bond and make nature more present in our lives.
GETTING OUT IN NATURE
The simple solution to bringing nature back into our lives is to just GET OUTSIDE. Make time to get out and be with the trees, the fresh air; the breeze. Spring and summer are the outdoor seasons and we must acknowledge that need to be in nature for us to flourish and be well. Let out all of that winter stagnation and thrive in the natural elements. Let the rainfall cleanse you and bring out your inner child. There really is nothing quite like it.
Go for a walk in the forest, a hike, and even bathe in the forest. Remind yourself what true bliss and balance is all about. Forest bathing is a beautiful process and has an impressive ability to cleanse your mind, body and spirit. Being naked in the elements brings out the goddess in you and your true connection to self and this planet. It’s a remarkable experience! You can do it with close friends, your partner, or at a retreat centre or outdoor spa. Whatever makes you comfortable and able to truly let go and be in that moment.
There are also many programs out there that can help you and your family reconnect with the natural world. A great example is the Pine Project in Toronto. This amazing organization offers programs to help little people (and adults too) get to know the forest and connect with nature; something that is often hard to foster in an urban environment. Pine project offers alternative schooling and camps to help teach children how to build a relationship with nature, to work with nature and respect our connection with it. Their programming doesn’t stop at early education either. Teens and adults can also participate in outings and naturalist training to rekindle their relationship with nature.
There’s also nothing quite like getting your hands in the dirt or your feet wet with morning dew. Soil is full of vital nutrients and bacteria that helps keep our gut biome and immune system strong and hearty. With the explosion of products containing antibacterial chemicals, we have weakened our immune systems and actually created environments for bacteria and viruses to mutate and become supercharged. So forget about anything antimicrobial and go get your hands dirty in the earth in your garden or backyard - it’s really good for you (as well as your wee ones!).
Gardening can also truly be a spiritual practice. Growing plants and food from seed and harvesting the things you’ve grown - it’s incredibly special. Plants can feel your love and vibration as well, I really believe that. We need to appreciate them and thank them for the food, beauty and vitality they bring. You will become a true green thumb when you learn to appreciate and give thanks to your plants - they absolutely thrive!
HOW TO BRING NATURE INTO YOUR HOME
[Photo by Min An from Pexels]
There are some beautiful ways that nature can be brought indoors - without literally having soil and sand on your floors (haha). Here are some practices to start with:
- Indoor Plants - a favourite of mine! Having plants indoors can not only help you mentally, but also physically by improving the air quality in your home. Plants take in our exhaled CO2 and convert it to oxygen again for us to breathe easy and live symbiotically with our plants indoors. If you live in apartments, this is also an amazing way to have a bit of nature with you when access to an outdoor space is limited.
- Composting - take what we think of as waste and give it back to the earth to turn into nutrients. Collecting food waste can dramatically reduce your garbage output as well. Most municipalities now have composting services, but not all. If you don’t have access to composting, try starting one of your own with your organic food waste, tea bags, coffee grounds and plant matter. Once it has been transformed and broken down by the bugs and worms, it will be the most nourishing soil for your garden and plants!
- Bringing pieces of the outdoors in - driftwood, stones, crystals, pinecones, seashells… there are many ways to bring small reminders of our natural world into our homes. Each time you look at them they will bring back a memory of where you were when you collected them and the great moments they created. I have crystals and plants all over my home and Vicki has plants and driftwood all over her home - we both love the reminders and energies they bring.
- Flowers are such a sensual piece of nature to bring in the home. They are visually AND aromatically pleasing and have this beautiful zen impermanence to them because their beauty and scent fades so quickly. You have to enjoy them IN the present moment because they will not be there forever (it’s quite poetic, isn’t it?)
- Really Great Goods’ Forest Fresh - because both Vicki and I want to be reminded of nature as much as possible, we love to create scents that can do that for us. Forest Fresh is one of those scents. With fir needle and cedarwood essential oils, it will help to bring you that much closer to a walk in the forest, while freshening your home and stimulating your mind and spirit. Try it for yourself and let us know what you think! It can be sprayed around your home and even on yourself :)