For this #NaturallyMindful Monday, I wanted to share a series of photos I recently took of geese at a pond. I was looking for a nature shot and thought the geese were serene as they skimmed through the water. As soon as I started using my camera, the geese took flight from east to west in front of me. I’m not sure what lead them to move, but it was beautiful! We stood there for a moment and then my pup decided to start to get a little antsy so we left the area. I didn’t see a Yorkie doing too well chasing after an entire flock!
The experience reminded me of the power of present-moment awareness in nature. I guarantee there have been many times in my life the same event could have occurred and I would not have paid any attention to it. There are definitely times and places for inner focus and work, but personally I now take every opportunity possible to practice mindfulness when in nature.
Tips for Discovering Treasures While In Nature
- Pay attention to your breathing as a centering point, especially if you find yourself becoming distracted or feeling overwhelmed by the amount of stimuli coming at you.
- Use all of your senses. I am very visually-driven so I tend to focus a lot on what I’m seeing, but attending to the other senses such as what I’m smelling, feeling on my skin, and hearing is also very powerful.
- Take in the scene in multiple scales. What are the littlest parts of your surroundings that you can feel, see or hear? What are the key parts of the scene? How does the entire area around you fit together into an ecosystem?
- Release any judgments you find yourself having towards the experience of being nature. Notice them instead and allow them to pass through your mind. Return to your breathing in order to re-center. For example, if I start to get annoyed because it is a bit hotter or cooler out then I like it to be, I can observe myself and how the temperature affects me, and then see those thoughts dissipating as new experiences fill my mind.
I hope to hear from you about your experiences in nature!