Nature has a way of bringing happiness. It actually has a physical effect on people. The lack of sunshine, like in the winter, can have negative effects on your mood. Getting more sunshine, while making sure that you wear sunscreen of course, can help you feel better. Fresh air also has a nice refreshing effect. Sometimes when I’m feeling a bit lazy or just not like doing much, going on a short walk outside will give me some more motivation.
I’ve never thought of myself as a very outdoorsy person, but I still enjoy spending time outdoors. I like reading outdoors with a nice breeze. Going on a walk in the sunshine can help lift up my spirits if I’ve been feeling a bit low. Sometimes even just closing my eyes and standing with my face turned towards the sun will help improve my mood. One of my favorite things is to have my windows open in my apartment. It helps to air out my apartment, and I’ve found that I tend to sleep better with the window open. I love falling asleep to the sound of rain. It’s very soothing to have the window open with a light rain.
One of the main ways that I tend to enjoy the outdoors is when I’m camping. I can sit around the campfire at night, listening to the crickets and frogs and watching the flames. Somehow even though I’m not sleeping in my own bed, I sleep very soundly when I’m camping. Then the birds wake me up in the morning with their chirping. I love to go on a walk by myself in the woods in the morning when it’s still quiet, being able to fully enjoy everything. I like feeling like I’m connecting with nature when I’m out there by myself. I can leave my phone and have no distractions. There’s no Facebook or Snapchat. No taking pictures of things that I see rather than actually making the effort to stop and pay attention to them. I am, as the saying goes “stopping to smell the roses”. Granted, there are no roses in the woods, but I’m stopping to pay attention to the world around me and to appreciate it.
It’s not quite warm enough in Minnesota to go camping yet, but it will be in about a month. I’m looking forward to being about to go camping with my family, to enjoy nature and also enjoy some quality time with the people that I love. It’s not a fancy weekend getaway, but it’s what makes me happy, and really that’s all that matters in this quest for happiness.