Contributed by Morgan N.

Nature is all around us, even in the big city.  There are parks to enjoy from the small city park to huge National Parks.   Do you pass by small parks in your community without even noticing they are there?  As part of nature appreciation, let’s bring a new level of awareness to them.

  • Choose a location. Find a location outside that you may pass by on a regular basis and ‘visit’ it.  If you want to feel more connected to nature going outside is the first step.
  • Put your electronics aside. You don’t have to leave them home but put them aside for now.  Sending texts, emails or playing a game of angry birds is going to distract you.
  • Sit down on the ground. Instead of sitting on a bench, sit on a rock, the ground or some grass.
  • Take a look around.  Notice what’s going around you.  What do you see?  Are there any animals around? How does the air feel against your skin?  Is it cool? Warm? Take in your surroundings as a whole.
  • Look at the details. Look in the grass for caterpillars or check out the patterns on the leaves or the shape of the trees.  Pay attention to what is immediately around you.
  • Take deep breaths. Stop and take a few deep breaths to relax you and appreciate the fresh air.
  • Do something you love. You do not need to spend all of your time in nature sitting quietly.  You can fish, hike, go camping, read a book, play chess, have a picnic or whatever genuinely pleases you.  Maybe you can bring some friends along and make an outing.
  • Join a group. Meetup has group events where you can find people who have coordinate hiking, camping, cross-country skiing trips.  You name it and MeetUp has a group.  You can even make your own.

Enjoy your time in nature either on your own or with some new friends.

In what ways do you enjoy nature?