Guest Blogger Christine Cassella of Light Footsteps

I am excited to have Christine Cassella of Light Footsteps as a guest blogger today.  Be sure to check out her website and blog at www.lightfootsteps.com!

DSC_4171aBarefoot Smiles Photography

 

Three Ways to Feel More Connected With Nature

by Christine M. Cassella, M.S.

Throughout our long evolutionary history, humans have held a certain reverence for the natural world knowing that its air, food, and water are what sustain and support us throughout life.  Famed biologist E.O. Wilson has noted that there appears to be an instinctive bond between humans and the natural world that he refers to as the biophilia hypothesis.1  This connection between humans and the Earth is deeply rooted and time spent in or even viewing nature can help to improve our physical2 and psychological health3.   Here are three of my favorite ways to enhance my connection with the natural world.

Get outside every day.  I write this even as snow remains on the ground and try to stick to this advice in all types of weather.  Getting outside each day helps us to better observe the cycles of nature and allows us to notice patterns between nature’s rhythms and the rhythms of our own lives.  It’s also healthy for us! Dress for the weather, and take a walk or find a quiet place to sit and you will be rewarded.

See food in a new way.  As our culture’s pace of life continues to increase in speed, we have become increasingly separated from our food by relying heavily on fast and processed foods. Not only will you notice that slowing down to cook your own meals and making an effort to eat more local and organic foods improves your health, but also the act of cooking homemade meals is one way that you can get in touch with the natural world.  Think of your food growing, absorbing nutrients and sunlight, and understand that this food will now nourish and support you, too.  We are made of Earth!

Start a garden.  Perhaps part of seeing your food in a new way will inspire you to begin a vegetable or herb garden.  Growing your own food is an excellent way to observe and understand our deep interconnection with nature, but any type of garden will help you to connect.  Digging in the soil, observing plant growth and weather patterns, and seeing what creatures appear will inspire and sustain you.  Remember that you can even start with a pot of basil on your patio – it will still be beneficial (and you’ll get pesto!).

Ready for some other ways to enhance your connection?  Stop by our website at http://www.lightfootsteps.com to learn more about our shop of herbal products, natural living classes, and small herb farm.  For more Earth-based inspiration, follow our blog at These Light Footsteps.

Christine M. Cassella, M.S. is a biologist, permaculturist, and community herbalist with a passion for sharing her love of the Earth with others.  She helps people to connect with nature through writing and workshops that teach about herbalism and natural living, and also through her line of handcrafted, non-toxic, and eco-friendly herbal products.  Learn more at lightfootsteps.com.

  1. http://www.amazon.com/Biophilia-Edward-O-Wilson/dp/0674074424/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1425494007&sr=8-1&keywords=biophilia
  2. http://psychcentral.com/news/2011/04/20/going-green-benefits-physical-mental-health/25492.html
  3. http://www.medicaldaily.com/benefits-ecotherapy-being-nature-fights-depression-improves-mental-health-and-well-being-261075
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