Jones Gap Falls 4152017

Another one of my favorite forms of self care is going outside and being in nature.  This takes many forms for me.  I might sit outside to eat or read a book.  I might pull weeds in my yard.  Maybe it’s walking barefoot in the grass.  It could also be hiking in the mountains.  No matter what I do outside, I find that I reconnect with my true self just by spending some time in nature.

Recently, I’ve been feeling a little tired.  I think it’s a product of fitting too much into my busy schedule and having unreasonably high expectations for myself.  Because of this, I’ve been not only tired but more irritable.  This isn’t a combination that leads me to getting more done in my life.  Really, this state is counterproductive.  I want to get more accomplished.  So, I try to fit more into my day.  However, the more I try to fit in, the less I actually accomplish because I’m too tired to do anything well.  Obviously I was in need of a little self care.  It was time to play.

My choice for downtime was to go hiking and this past weekend I went on a 7 mile hike with my son.  The hike itself was strenuous at times.  I challenged myself, but I also got to let go of my daily challenges for about 4 hours.  I marveled at the flowers that were blooming.  I got my feet wet in the streams.  I checked my balance as I walked on fallen logs.  I had good conversations with my 16 year old son.  I listened to the birds singing.  Most importantly, I quit thinking about my to-do list.

We hiked from Ceasar’s Head State Park to Jones Gap Falls.  We stopped at the falls for a picnic lunch.  Sitting at the base of the falls, I took the chance to just be in nature.  I absorbed the sounds, the smells and the feel of the surrounding area.  I watched the water tumble down and over the rocks. I sat in the sun and just enjoyed being at the falls.

I noticed when we left the falls how refreshed that I felt.  It wasn’t only the food that gave me energy to finish the hike.  It was also the energy that I got from being outside and in the sun.  Being outside gives me mental energy.  I reconnect with Mother Nature and I feel ready to face my life again.

I finished this hike tired, but this was a different tired than when I started.  I started out mentally tired.  When I was done I was mentally energized, but physically tired.  Mentally I was ready to jump back into my day or week and do the things that I needed to do.  Because I was mentally refreshed, I actually could get things done.  I was back to feeling like myself as well.  I had more patience and liked those around me again.

I think that I lose sight of who I am at times as I get caught up in daily life.  Giving myself time to just be in nature, I find myself again.  For me time to be in nature is a form of self care that brings me back to myself over and over again.  My goal is to experience Mother Nature on a consistent basis rather than wait until I am overwhelmed.  So, look for me to be outside whenever I get the chance.  I’ll be finding myself again.

If you would like more information on finding yourself through yoga therapy, then email me at Becky@PByogatherapy.

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