A friend of mine shared a profound article with me from the Wall Street Journal, titled “Mom Was Right: Go Outside”. It touches on evidence that being outdoors, especially in nature, improves mood, creativity, and general well-being.
The article definitely hit home for me. I’ve been an avid “indoorsman” since birth. I hated being outside, for pretty much any reason. It took me 35 years, but I’ve discovered exactly what this article describes. At the beginning of this year, I went on the first real camping trip that I’d been on in my adult life. I was so deeply impacted by that simple one-night trip, I almost immediately made plans for a second. I took up kayaking and since have been on the water more weekends than not. The almost overwhelming calm I experience when I’m camping or kayaking is as powerful as the anxiety for which I take prescription drugs. Being outdoors hyperconnects me with nature in the opposite direction that I’m otherwise hyperconnected with the electronic world. I hope that WSJ article inspires someone. I so wish I’d discovered this sooner in life. I’m now the weirdo that takes pause in a strip-mall parking lot to point out the Snowy Egret to my four-year-old daughter. I’m really okay with that.