Technology is great. It can keep us in touch with loved ones both near and far, offer a constant source of entertainment, make banking more effortless than ever, allow us to work many positions remotely, and give us the opportunity for increased networking. What’s not to like about that? However, the problem is that we can often treat it less like a helpful tool and more like the centerpiece of our daily lives. Not only is that not healthy socially, that also seriously disconnects us from nature and the world around us. No matter how much we may fight it, humans are creatures of the Earth, and as such, we need to engage with it! Need a little help getting back in the swing of it? Here are six tips to help you get back to basics and reconnect with the world around us.
1. Hike Your Local Trail
When attempting to trade in some of your phone time for a little R&R with the Earth, you obviously need to make a concerted effort to get outside. Some people need a little more direction than that, though, or need an actual activity to focus on. If you fall into this camp, there’s no better way to make your outside time work for you than by hiking one of your local trails. It’ll get you out of the house, allow you to soak up some sunshine and fresh air, and double as a bit of exercise all the while. Just be sure to drink plenty of water and take breaks when needed. Remember: we’re here to experience nature, not exhaust ourselves! Go at your own pace and enjoy the process.
2. Walk on the Grass Barefoot
Hiking is a great activity for those who are looking to reconnect with our planet. Still, we fully recognize not everyone has the interest, access, or physical ability to do this. That’s okay! You can still get a slice of the great outdoors in other ways. One easy way is to go out in your yard, take off your shoes, and simply enjoy the feeling of grass under your feet. It may sound or even feel funny at first, but it’s a super powerful way to reconnect with both the natural world and our own bodies. After all, it literally brings us closer to our environment and shucks off the artificial barriers we’ve built for ourselves.
3. Choose to Grow Something This Summer
Nature is completely bound up in the cycle of seasons, of life and death, of decay and renewal. That’s remarkable stuff to watch first-hand, yet you don’t have to wait for each season to roll around just to view this process in action. See it up close and personal and develop a closer relationship with nature at the same time by choosing to grow something this summer. Whether you opt for a cactus, some gorgeous flowers, fruits, and veggies, or a finicky tree, you’ll get a lot out of literally getting your hands dirty and seeing something grow and flourish because of you and the bounty of our natural world.
4. Visit a Farmer’s Market
Despite any preconceived notions we may have, embracing nature isn’t only about shacking up in your own version of Walden Pond with no electricity or people in sight or hugging trees until you feel properly reacquainted. It’s about being in-tune, feeling, and truly knowing about the world around us and our place in it. Knowing about your food can also play an important part in this. So, if you want to truly change your relationship with nature, start by visiting your local farmer’s market. See stuff unpackaged, ask questions, and learn about where it comes from. It’ll change not only how you see food but how you approach our environment overall.
5. Wear Wooden Accessories
If you’re like most of us out there, you probably love getting new accessories. There’s simply something fun and exciting about having a new item to wear around and find a place for within our wardrobe. Unfortunately, this isn’t nearly as fun for the planet. These accessories are frequently made within a continuous 52-week cycle, with pieces constantly thrown into the trash heap after breaking because of quality issues or to make way for a slightly newer, shinier, reportedly better version. That’s terrible for the environment, but you can be kinder and reconnect with it in one fell swoop by opting instead for wooden jewelry like the wood watches, wooden rings, and earrings we have here at Urban Designer. Sustainable, durable, and always in style, they generate significantly less waste and will be your new favorite accessory for years to come.
6. Pick Up Trash Around the Neighborhood
Took up gardening, bought a handsome wood watch, and have been luxuriating in the feel of grass under your feet but are still looking for something else to reconnect with nature? Well, we’ve got one last tip that should help you do just that: pick up trash around your neighborhood or around one that doesn’t get nearly enough love. It’s not glamorous by any means. It can be hot and dirty, especially now in the summer, but it’s invaluable. By doing this, you’ll get up-close and personal with the harm we’re doing our planet and will show it the respect it deserves by doing your small part in clean-up. And at the end of the day, you’ll leave feeling much more connected with the beautiful gift that surrounds us morning, noon, and night.