Choosing Nature to Nurture

 The other day, I woke up in a funk. There are days when I wake with a smile, eagerly looking forward to the other love of my life, my cuppa Joe, and there are mornings when I have to work at the joy. Abraham Lincoln was right about so many things, one of them being that “Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.” Hence, I needed to get on that.

     I started my day like I normally do. Before my feet hit the floor I always say thank you. “Thank you for who I am, all I have, and all I will be and do today.” Gratitude is so very necessary in one’s life, but was my mood lifted? Nope. I still had to work at it, but the really super, duper, good thing is that I know there are plenty of things for me to do that will put my mind in a place of peace. Number one on that list is to get outside.

My new awesome sticker…now I have to figure out where to put it!

     I do love to run, but just being outside, moving my body in nature, not only helps to put things in perspective for me, but lifts my spirits, gets the blood flowing in the body and juices flowing in the brain, and makes me feel like Superwoman. Pre-run, I’m a Shlumpa-dinka, procrastinating around the house, mind ruminating. But once I’m out there, whammo! At about mile one, the cape somehow magically appears on my shoulders. I feel like I can do anything and conquer the world! Those silly, negative thoughts, poof! They are gone, and my daily to-do list better watch out, because Jenny is flying in! 

     Now in reality, I do not conquer the world, saving all from doom and fear, and there are days when the to-do list doesn’t get as many hits as I would like. But it doesn’t matter. Know why? Because I still feel like I can do anything and I have joy in my heart. It’s all good.

     As I said, running is my outdoor mood lifter of choice, but I also adore walking, gardening or watering the flowers, biking, yoga, swimming, or shooting hoops with my girl. You don’t need to run for those endorphins to kick in, you just need to move, and moving in nature is simply a balm for the soul. Heck, even sitting in nature is an option.

     So back to my funky day. I had some coffee, was cranky to Paul for a bit, and then I got myself in gear to do my normal procrastination routine, which consists of downloading some new music to get excited about. Classic Christmas Hits, anyone? Hey, don’t judge. Whatever gets me going is a good thing.

     Eventually I got out the door and moving, and yes! Mission accomplished. Joy to the World and Joy to Jenny! The trees were glorious, the sun was shining, the freshly mown lawn was incredible, and I didn’t even get down on myself when another runner blew past me without breaking a sweat. I smiled and continued onward. 

     I don’t have to tell you that it’s pretty easy to get funked out lately. There’s so much going on in the world and it’s a lot to take in. Fear and negativity have been running rampant and we can easily slip into overwhelm and sadness. We do have to acknowledge when we are not in a happy place, as it’s important to not bury what we are feeling. But, we don’t have to stay stuck there.

      Together, let’s put on our stovepipe hats and make up our minds to get to a good place. Then we’ll walk out the door, and as we move in nature, feel the cape start to blow in the breeze. And because all this happens in our head, it won’t matter that we look absolutely ridiculous in a Superwoman cape and stovepipe hat, because what’s truly important is that we allow nature to nurture us back to peace.

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