I’m always on the lookout for ideas that are quick, easy and make a big difference. This one is as organic as it comes- Exposure to nature improves health and happiness, lowers stress and improves your immune system.
No big surprise, but did you know that exposure to nature actually improves your core values? According to an Oct., 2009 study from the Univ. of Rochester, exposure to elements of nature makes you more Pro-Social (versus anti-social), meaning that “having deep enduring relationships” and “working toward the betterment of society” is more important to you. Additionally, it also made you more generous with your hard earned money and decreased your need “to be admired by many people.”
To be healthier, more generous, connected and self assure are certainly some big carrots to reach for, but as a realist, I know that a weekly trip to Yellow Stone is not likely. Have no fear, this study reported that you can experience significant improvements by simply hanging pictures of nature and putting plants (even fake ones) in your living/working spaces, changing your computer and phone screen savers to natural vistas and trying to be near a window with a view of nature more often.
Now, ask yourself, “Who in my life would I like to be healthier, happier, more generous and more interested in forming deeper, enduring relationships?” Maybe its time to expose your significant other, kids, friends, clients and mentors to share some nature with you.
- Stop by a park or body of water for a moment or two on your way home from work and you will bring a better you home.
- Need to talk something important over with someone? Invite them to walk and talk at a local park or to a lunch with a view.
- Want your kids to be healthier, more connected and generous? Go to a local park and grill out for dinner once a week. No TV, just you and your family, nature, activity and healthy grilled foods.
- Need to raise money? Put together an outdoor event and invite an amazing speaker.
- Want to give a great gift? Send plants, nature prints or even a new screen-saver.
May and June are two of the best months for outdoor living, especially in the evenings. Start today, get out, get connected and have fun!
Andy also wrote the book Change Your Day, Not Your Life, a guide to sustained motivation and more productivity.
See Andy's speaking schedule for an event near you.
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