brush with nature

The research is clear. And it’s good news! Nature is good for our bodies, souls, and minds.

Here are just four ways we benefit from spending time in nature: Lower blood pressure, relief of symptoms of depression, anxiety, and ADHD, lower levels of the stress hormone cortisone, and a source of awe!

Paul Piff, a researcher at the University of California, was quoted as saying, “Experiences of awe attune people to things larger than themselves. These experiences of awe cause individuals to feel less entitled, less selfish, and to behave in more generous and helping ways.” In other words, if we all spent regular time in nature, the world could be a much better place.

I know how fortunate I am to live where I do—on a mountainside in Virginia. The name of our road is actually Viewtree Drive, because, well, that’s what we do: view trees.

Although I’m not the gardener in the family, I’m the unofficial garden arranger. Instead of placing flowers and bushes in spots where they can simply be viewed, I position them so that as you walk from the driveway to the front porch, you can’t help but brush by them. Or if you take the steppingstone path to the yard, you need to pass by gently so as not to break off blooms. I place outdoor seating adjacent to overhanging bushes so that you might feel a hydrangea blossom behind you.

brush with nature

Even Grace the beagle likes to blend in with nature. I do believe she imagines it is camouflage to hide her from the squirrels.

brush with nature

As part of an effort to “bring the outside in” I position the front door wreath’s trailing vine as though it’s trying to step inside the house.

So go ahead and sign off whatever device you’re reading this post on and go outside and find some beautiful and beneficial nature to enjoy.


Greater Good Magazine article

American Psychological Association

Time Magazine article