Children who play outside are more creative, have lower stress levels and more active imaginations. They also become fitter and leaner, develop stronger immune systems, and have greater respect for themselves and others as well as the environment. Imagine if we took time out of our busy schedules to enjoy nature as adults. The U.S. Forest Service’s Discover the Forest campaign wants to encourage you to enjoy your local #Naturehood and to help encourage others to do the same. These “naturehoods” are just a short drive away, making it easy for you to unplug from the daily routine and re-connect with nature.
With all of the new technologies and overscheduling of today’s world, it’s easy to forget just how close—and how important— your local forest or green space really is. There are many developmental benefits for children who spend time in nature, but the these green spaces are just as important for adults.
It is easy to get caught up in the everyday hustle and bustle of crazy schedules, work, school, and technology. But it is so important to take hold of those small moments and enjoy what nature has given us. Technology may be a great learning tool, but so is nature. While we can use sound machines, or app that mimic the sound of birds, bubbling brooks and forest winds, nothing can replace hearing those birds in person. If you’re listening to them while waiting for a bite at your local fishing hole, or taking a deep breath and smelling the native flowers, even better.
Spending time in nature can spark the imagination of kids of all ages. Even then, after aimlessly wandering into hectic schedules, technology overload, and the never ending busy world around us, adults, like ourselves might find a spark of creativity in exploring the outdoors.
It is never too late to encourage your family, friends and colleagues to enjoy your local #Naturehood. What is #Naturehood, you ask? It is the forest that is right in your neighborhood, and you may not even know it. Beyond the clearings, there are trails, trees, wildlife and water just waiting for you.
I’m also a firm supporter of “Leave No Trace©.” My father is an outdoorsman and since I was small child, these principles were taught to me and I’ve passed them on to my own son. The Leave No Trace tenets are:
- Plan Ahead and Prepare
- Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
- Dispose of Waste Properly
- Leave What You Find
- Minimize Campfire Impacts
- Respect Wildlife
- Be Considerate of Other Visitors
Visit the Discovertheforest.org “What to Do” page for a full list of fun activity ideas to get you started on your outdoor adventure!
Get the word out to friends, family and colleagues about how important it is to step outside and take a breath of fresh air! Share one of these sample social media updates:
- Forests are magical places. It’s easy to forget that as you age- the world around you can begin to feel more and more ordinary. Find your local #Naturehood by visiting discovertheforest.org today. It’s time to reclaim our childlike imagination.
- See adventure in the everyday. Find your local #Naturehood by visiting discovertheforest.org today.
- Forests the size of your backyard are transformed into fantasy worlds through the eyes of children—because when they’re small, everything is big. Find your inner child and local #Naturehood by visiting discovertheforest.org today.
- Exposure to nature improves awareness, reasoning and observational skills. Find your local #Naturehood by visiting discovertheforest.org today. It’s time to reclaim your imagination.
Disclaimer: This was not a sponsored post