We live in an overstimulated world, packed with demanding targets and grades; a world growing ever so tense that we are forever close to fatigue and fail to understand why. The answer is simple really – we have forgotten we were designed to be outdoorsy says Diipti Jhangiani in this guest post for She The People.
Scientists are now discovering the secret to happiness while being with nature. Serotonin – a happy hormone gets stimulated when humans spend time in the outdoors. ‘Suffering from depression? Go play with dirt’ they now say. You could splurge in a highly luxurious mud spa but I guarantee you it will not compare to the contentment while indulging in a session of gardening. Terrace farming, growing herbs at home, participating in plantation drives are simple ways of reconnecting back with the soil.
We continue to perpetuate a drone-like institutionalised education and industrialised work culture
Everyone says human beings are visual creatures. I don’t think so. Anatomically, we were not made to be so. We have 5 equal senses – to touch, to see, to taste, to smell, to hear. On a tour around an urban farm in the city, my attempt is first to bring visitors awareness to the fragrance of the soil. I get them to reach out to a handful of fresh soil and soak in the aroma. All the hyper active kids calm down and it is amazing to watch how their awareness instantly expands. Onwards we take them to observe the sounds around, of the birds, the bees and even place their ears to the ground and listen to the bugs. Tasting the fresh harvest, caressing the delicate flowers that they witness turning into fruits – the entire outdoor experience is incomparable to any textbook lesson. So you see, how complete this sensory experience of being in the outdoors is? We are missing it sorely in our daily lives and I wish we would incorporate such wholesome experiences that make us more human.. In contrast, we continue to perpetuate a drone-like institutionalised education and industrialised work culture.
As a kid, perhaps you played hockey for the school team or enjoyed climbing trees and plucking mulberries? I am sure you would enjoy doing it today; there really is nothing stopping you. Out of 365 days in a year, why then do you earmark just a few precious days – to let the ocean waves caress our feet or to trek through forests – on a vacation away from home. You don’t have to look elsewhere to enjoy these simple pleasures; you can be outdoorsy right here, right now. And the fitness benefits are a brilliant takeaway too. From beach boot camps, to trending animal flow workouts that mimic primal movements, slacklining in your local park, long distance biking, kayaking, longboarding – the list of outdoor activities to pursue in the city is endless.
Science has whetted, your favourite influencers are crazy about it. The secret is out – you can be with nature every single day of the year. All you have to do is seek out the activity you enjoy and go out there, be outdoorsy.