I’ve been working in the outdoors for over 30 years. I feel there’s something really powerful about being in the wilderness. Nothing but the wind and nature all around you, it just feels good.
“…being among trees helps to reduce stress, improves mood, and reduces the possibility of poor mental health.” Forestry England
The complexities of living in a modern world and the seemingly relentless pursuit of perfection in our lives has left us, it appears, in disarray.
In 2017 64.7 million prescriptions were written for antidepressants in the UK and NBC reports that one in 6 Americans took antidepressants in 2017.
To me this is staggering. What does this mean for the next generation?
Maybe the cure isn’t a pill. Maybe it’s as simple as disconnecting. Even a computer when it’s overloaded stops working. We need to shut it down, restart it and then it’s up and running again.
I think in simple terms it’s the same for us: how can we expect to keep functioning without rebooting every once in a while?
Below is a wonderful short film about a 93-year-old man named Jack. Jack lives in his handmade cabin in the wilderness, making violin bows. His passion for the simple things and the outdoors was captivating. A quote from him I will never forget is:
Everyone is running to go forward, I just want to go back – Jack
Ask yourself, when was the last time you really lived in that moment, in the now, even for just 5 minutes?
We are always chasing our tails and worrying about the future, that we forget to enjoy the present. I truly feel if we don’t stop every once in a while and look at what we have achieved, what does it all mean or amount to?
For me, my peace is living and working in the outdoors. It’s not to say I don’t get stressed or down. I do. But the outdoors does offer me a moment of calm, stillness and peace.
So whatever your passion, take time to sit back and enjoy the ride. I certainly don’t profess to have all the answers. But a balanced life should include a walk in the woods, planning an escape, or simply watching the sunset. If nothing else, it sure does feel good.