Nature therapy

I’ve started walking. Every day. And not just regular city walking, but deliberate, mindful walking. I go fast, for at least fifteen minutes, usually closer to forty. And I head directly to the closest green space.

At my office, that’s the park by the Hudson. Even in the cold, in the spitting snow, I’ve walked. I hit the cobblestones, hear the lapping water, smell the wet loamy earth, see the stalks of the leafless trees and something in my soul releases. I can breathe.

At home, I hike through residential streets to Prospect Park. I find the lake, the ducks, the crackle of sticks and dirt under my shoes. I see the sky–blue or gray or masked by rain–and I can breathe.

Now, I see that my body was on to something.

The difference between natural and urban landscapes is how they command our attention. While man-made landscapes bombard us with stimulation, their natural counterparts give us the chance to think as much or as little as we’d like, and the opportunity to replenish exhausted mental resources.

–“How Nature Resets Our Minds and Bodies“,


2 Responses to “Nature therapy”

  1. 1 March 29, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    Good for you. I have a section from one novel I wrote that i think you will like to see. Not a pitch, just something I think you will appreciate. Enjoy the world around you, my friend.

    Around one turn, Jacquelyn saw many flowers growing along the path. Kayo stopped and leaned over to observe one. “Take a closer look and tell me what you think.”
    Jacquelyn kneeled to obtain a closer look. “It’s a beautiful flower.”
    “Yes, I think it can be said that it’s beautiful. Now look at it again, and this time I really want you to concentrate on it deeply and pay full attention to all the unique and beautiful details of this one specific flower.”
    As Jacquelyn did as she was told, she noticed that every petal looked perfect and without any defects. The bright and vivid colors glowed and even the smell was fresh, clean, and fragrant. “Yes, it’s very beautiful. I think it’s one of god’s gifts to us.”
    “Do you remember the two teacups we used the other day?”
    “Yes, I do remember them. Why do you ask?”
    “I now want you to do this for me. Think of the small flower as a teacup and think of yourself as a teacup. The energy in this small flower’s much more powerful than I think you understand. When you see the beauty in this flower, I want you to also be aware of the feelings in you. The beauty around you is like the love in you. The more beauty you perceive, the more love energy you’ll have. In addition, you’ll see that the more love you have in you, the more beautiful objects are around you.”
    Jacquelyn started concentrating on the flower in front of her again, and how beautiful it looked and made her feel inside. She began thinking of love in a pure state with no demands or hidden agendas. The flower became even more beautiful as she studied it while she also felt a warm fuzzy feeling growing inside her.
    After taking her hand and pulling her up, Kayo then pointed to all of the flowers around her. “All of these are the same, but we have concentrated on only this one.”
    “Yes, there’re many here.”
    “I have a question for you to think about as we walk. Does the flower have beauty in it that makes you happy and full of love, or is it the love in you which makes the flower beautiful? In other words, which teacup causes the other one to vibrate in harmony?”

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I work as an editor at Harlequin, but the posts on this site are all mine and don’t represent my employer's positions, strategies or opinions.
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