On your globetrotting adventures, you could decide to spend your time doing all sorts of different things. You could, for example, hit the world’s biggest party capitals, and rave your heart out until the early (or not so early) hours of the morning, across multiple time zones. Or you could experience the great reserves of culture and history stored in places such as the Renaissance art galleries of Florence. Or you could go in for a gastro-tour of the world, trying out authentic Thai street food one day, and German schnitzel the next.
One option that is often overlooked, however, and which is deeply worth the trouble of pursuing, is a trip where you just disappear into nature, and let the human world of civilisation fade into the background for a while.
Whether you hit the woods with a rucksack, a tent, some bear-repellent, and a dream, or else stay in a forest-side chalet or lodge courtesy of www.forestrise.com.au, there can be some profound benefits to retreating into nature for a while.
Here are a few of those benefits.
Modern life is remarkably complicated — certainly more complicated for the average person than it’s ever been before in human history.
Of course, we’ve all come to enjoy a wide range of benefits into the bargain, not least of all the fact that we can now be cured of diseases that would otherwise have likely wiped us out at an early point in our lives.
But nonetheless, we’re all at more or less permanent risk of mental overload and burnout these days, and surveys frequently find that people are becoming consistently more stressed out and anxious as time moves on and new technologies are developed.
Social media, for instance, appears to be strongly correlated with negative emotion, with people who use social media programs the most apparently being more likely to suffer from increased anxiety, depression, and social insecurity.
Of course, social media is just one example. Consider, also, the fact that we’re all plugged into the global news cycle 24/7, in addition to being permanently contactable by our bosses at work, thanks to email, WhatsApp, and smartphones.
Getting out into nature — providing you also strongly limit the amount of tech you take with you on the trip, and use your phone only for emergencies — gives you an opportunity to breathe, and simplifies your life and outlook for a time.
Suddenly, the question “what do I have to do today?” is answered by “eat something, read a book, and stroll in the woods” instead of “respond to Bob re: Project X, call the plumber, book my car in for service, respond to Jack’s birthday event, update new photos on Instagram and pick the right filter, fill in my proposal, update my CV, go to the gym, buy groceries….”
Pretty much whenever research is done on the subject, it seems to be the case that simply spending time in nature is found to improve your health on various different levels.
Just in 2018, a new report from the University of East Anglia in the UK found that living close to nature and spending time outside seemed to have a wide range of health benefits, ranging from a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, to a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, premature death, preterm birth, stress, and high blood pressure.
It might be impossible to say exactly why nature seems to be so good for us, but the fact remains that spending time in nature appears to provide a wide array of serious health benefits.
As the famous mountaineer John Muir once commented, more than a hundred years ago; “Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul alike.”
For a lot of people, although not for everyone, one of the best things about travelling is returning home, and being able to appreciate the simple comforts of home life with new eyes, and from a whole new perspective.
If you can relate to that sentiment, then it makes sense to think that getting away from the ordinary urban world and all its assorted technologies for a while, may make you far more grateful for your modern luxuries once you get back. It may also inspire you to adopt a healthier and more balanced relationship with those luxuries, too.
Maybe instead of binge-watching TV shows for hours each night, you’ll ration your viewing better, appreciate it more, and have a good idea of other, fulfilling things you can do with the rest of your free time, as well.
Not too long ago, historically speaking, most people, even in highly urbanised and developed Western countries, used to live in the countryside and have a pretty intimate connection to nature.
In these instances, it was likely to be the case that a trip to the big city was a rare and memorable experience, that would give birth to plenty of worthwhile tales to share with friends.
These days, the tables have flipped. Now, most of us live in or around cities, and even those of us who live, broadly speaking, in the “countryside” are constantly wired into the wider world through the internet and TV. Technology and urban life are no longer rarities. Now, it’s time spent in nature that’s uncommon.
Spend some time in the forest and, once you’ve adjusted your senses and your sense of time, you’ll notice squirrels running around and playing games, trees with certain distinct markings, and beautiful patterns on the ground made by fallen leaves and moss.
"Creative mind and founder of Amanda Chic" Influencer , fashion , travel and lifestyle blogger.