Mother Nature

Why Mother Nature is a Gift

I can’t tell you how many times I hear a version of the same answer over and over again when I ask someone what getting out in nature does for them. This is what they say, “It brings me peace, clarity, expands my heart, connects me to the world.”

“It fills me with fresh ideas and fresh perspective.”

“It’s my home.”

“It recalibrates my sense of well-being and rightness in the world.”

“It gives me appreciation, calmness, grounding.”

“It inspires me, renews me.”

“It gives me peace and joy.” woman-out-in-nature-looking-at-camera

“It calms my mind and generally makes me feel happier, more optimistic.”

“It’s refreshing and peaceful at the same time.”

“Nature is my spirituality.”

“It gives me a sense of peace, awe, gratitude, and connection with the universe.”

“It helps me remember everything runs in cycles and will change”,

“It frees my body, mind, and spirit.”

Wow- that Mother Nature has got it goin’ on!

This is what she does to us, for us. She is always there to help bring us back to ourselves. Back to a more natural state of peace. Peace, groundedness, centeredness is who we are at a core level.

I can think of almost nothing better than spending time outside and feeling peaceful, connected, re-energized, grounded, happier, and with a calmer mind.

We each enjoy her differently. Some of us like to sit by a river or at the beach. Some enjoy biking or hiking, some like to photograph nature, some like to garden.

What’s most important is that we actually spend time with her. Regularly. The to-do list will always be there. For the rest of your days. So let it be.

There are times when you need to step out of your everyday, a million things to do life, and go outside. Spend 10 minutes watching the birds at your bird feeder like I’m doing as I type this. Spend 3 hours hiking along a gorgeous river, like I did a few weekends ago.

I promise you that if you allow yourself to be there and take it all in, you will leave feeling some if not all of the things mentioned above.

And what happens when you get back to your regular life? Because you feel more grounded and centered, you'll have more energy, you’ll able to make more clear decisions, you'll prioritize better, you'll discover what’s more important at the moment. You can often get out of the muck and focus.

And that’s the gift. Mother nature brings you back to yourself. Your best self.

So I suggest you grab your calendar right now.

Right.

Now.

And flip through the next month, and schedule yourself time in nature. I don’t care if it’s once a week, or once a day. For 6 hours, or 20 minutes. But schedule it. And do it. And enjoy. Not only will you like yourself better. Others will like you more too.

She not only sustains everything on this planet, she sustains us. Without us, she would continue just fine.

Appreciate her and she will nurture you.

If you’d like, Leave a comment on the blog below, or email me, coachwithsusan@hotmail.com.

If this struck you and you think, “I know one friend who would really like this”. Please forward it to them.

If you found this helpful, let me know. I’d love to  hear from you.

susan small sig 05:14

Get Outside and Nurture Your Life

Choosing the beaten path

My husband, our two furry friends and I, love to hike. When we lived in Alaska, hiking often meant we wouldn’t pass another soul while we were out. We loved that! That doesn’t happen so much here in the lower 48.

20140720_125418_resized

Over the weekend we decided to go hike one of the endless trails here. We chose a popular one. There were a ton of cars in the parking area at the trailhead. I have to admit, we weren’t really all that excited about sharing the trail with a bazillion other people.

But for some reason we didn’t come across that many while we were out.

No only that, the longer we hiked on this well worn trail, the more awesome the landscape became. Mt. Bachelor was to our left and Broken Top was straight ahead, front and center. It was, as my husband likes to say,

“spectacular”.

And we never would have seen all that spectacular-ness (made up word J) had we not chosen the beaten path that day.

While they say the road less traveled is where life happens, I’d say the well-traveled road has its perks too. It’s well traveled for a reason.

Have you got a story about taking the road more or less traveled? Please. Share it with us.

Leave a comment on the blog below, or email me, coachwithsusan@hotmail.com.

If this struck you and you think, “I know one friend who would really like this”. Please forward it to them.

I love hearing from you.

susan small sig 05:14

Get Outside and Nurture Your Life

Death CAN be a gift

My husband and I woke early one morning last week to watch the sunrise in Hilton Head. It was beautiful. Gray clouds on the horizon became peach, then pink, as the sun made it’s way higher into the sky.

We decided to walk down the beach while it was still the coolest part of the day. About 10 minutes down the sandy shore, we spotted a group of people gathered at the water’s edge.

As we got closer, I saw why they were there.

A pilot whale had beached itself and was lying on it’s side.   pilot whale hilton head

I instantly burst into tears. I was overcome with sadness in that moment.

A man standing there said the whale had been alive less than 30 minutes before we got there.

I instinctively walked up to it and placed my hand on it’s belly. It may sound crazy, but I was hoping to feel it’s heart beat. Hoping to find out he, or she, wasn’t dead. The whale felt a bit like rubber but since rigor mortis hadn’t set in, this amazing creature had a softness to it. I cried even more.

I have no idea why this whale died. Was it sick? Just it’s time?

What I do know is that being in presence of a 15 ft. long whale, even though it was no longer living, was a gift.

Death always reminds me of life. What’s important to me. Who’s important to me.

It helps me re-evaluate how I show up in the world every day. How I treat others. How I treat myself.

Am I living my life in union with what I tell others and myself is important?

I didn’t know this whale. He or she wasn’t even human. No matter, it’s life, and it’s death, was a gift.

A chance for me to see again, with eyes more clear.

Leave a comment on the blog below, or email me, coachwithsusan@hotmail.com.

If this struck you and you think, “I know one friend who would really like this”. Please forward it to them.

I love hearing from you.

susan small sig 05:14

Get Outside and Nurture Your Life

The difference between dreamy and dreary

I recently spent 5 days in the woods at a nature reserve in NY with other nature loving life coaches from around the country. Every day was gloriously sunny but the last. It rained that entire day. You would have thought our time would be ruined. Nope, we just donned our rain gear, threw up a tarp, and continued with our plans. A little mother nature wasn’t going to scare us off.  the beauty of rain in the trees We often stopped what we were doing to look out and marvel at the raindrops glistening on the tree leaves and listen to the rain falling gently on the ground around us or on the tarp above us. We could even smell the rain as it slowly soaked into the earth. It was dreamy. I mean really dreamy.

That evening I was on a train back to Grand Central Station to start my trek back to Alaska. It was still raining outside. The closer we got to NYC, the less trees I noticed, and the more drab it became. The sky seemed ominous with gray clouds and the backdrop was big concrete buildings, cars, and paved roads. It looked dreary really.

What a stark contrast!

The weather was exactly the same in each place. One looked dreamy, the other dreary.

The difference?

Mother Nature

Do you have enough of her in your life?

Are you getting out to enjoy the beauty that naturally surrounds you regularly? Join the conversation on the blog by leaving a comment below, or email me, coachwithsusan@hotmail.com

I am grateful to be able to spend some time with you virtually today. Thank you.

As always, take from here what works for you, share with your friends if you think they might benefit, and the rest you can leave behind.

Bloom On!

Seeds of Kindness Bloom and Bloom and Bloom…

Going with the flow

We have a little problem here in Fairbanks, Alaska. We are usually knee-deep in what we call break-up this time of year. The temperatures are above freezing during the day (and most nights), the snow is melting like gangbusters, we have daylight almost no matter what time you go to bed or get up, and we are leaving winter behind in the literal and metaphorical dust.  going with the flow Except the usual isn’t happening. We continue to have snowstorms and colder weather. We are so close to spring we can feel it with every fiber of our being but we keep being teased every few days with warmer sunshine and melting, followed by white, seriously distressing, frozen flakes falling from the sky.

It’s time to practice the “go with the flow” mentality. We’re past the grumbling stage. We’re past denial. Past sad. Past upset.

We’ve moved on to, get those skis back out and go for a spin, wow… all this snow means the ground will be more wet and provide beautiful grass and flowers this summer, and this could make for less forest fires this next season.

What we resist persists.

That’s not a new phrase but it’s true. The more we resist what is really happening, the more crappy we feel. And we can always choose how we feel at any given point by choosing what thoughts we think about the situation. Snow outside is just that. It’s snow. It isn’t good or bad. It’s neutral. It’s only good or bad based upon the judgment we place on it. To the person who absolutely loves to ski, the snow is still awesome. To the person who can’t wait to be in shorts  enjoying the green grass, the snow sucks.

Going with the flow means you have to be willing to drop your personal timeline.

Because most certainly, the weather will not often cooperate and follow the timeline you have for it. How could it? Everyone has their own perfect timeline for what the weather should be like on any given day of the year depending upon what that person would prefer to be doing and what weather they think would perfectly accompany that. Poor Mother Nature couldn’t keep up with that many different requests no matter how hard she tried.

Here’s why going with the flow can be so helpful.

Because when you drop your timeline for something to happen, your stress drops markedly. The stress comes from the fact that you want something to happen in a different time frame than it is. You’ve decided that isn’t good, therefore you feel crappy about it.

Think about it, there aren’t that many instances where time is crucial, I mean life and death crucial. Other than people needing to go to the hospital or being in surgery for example, it’s us who have decided that the natural flow of the way things occur isn’t right.

Be willing to drop some of your timeline for things in life and notice what happens to your stress level. It’s like riding a wave. Go up when it goes up, come down when it comes down, and you’ll never drown in the surf… or the snow :)

Are you willing to go with the flow and drop your timeline for some event in your life? Join the conversation on the blog by leaving a comment below, or email me, coachwithsusan@hotmail.com

I am grateful to be able to spend some time with you virtually today. Thank you.

As always, take from here what works for you, share with your friends if you think they might benefit, and the rest you can leave behind.

Bloom On!

Seeds of Kindness Bloom and Bloom and Bloom…

Why (it's a good thing) Change Takes Time

**Special Offer**- If you're interested in an opportunity to find out what coaching can do for your life at a fabulous rate. Check out my "Pay What You Want (almost) November" page. **Special Offer**

Main Blog:

Click here if you'd like to hear the audio version of this blog. I'm trying something new.

In our culture, when we want something, we want it RIGHT NOW. Internet access, food at restaurants, to be at point B before we’ve even left point A.  Positive Change Takes Time

I think that’s because we live in a time = money world. If it takes too much time, someone is going to lose money.

And that just makes me sad.

I prefer to look to Mother Nature for the example she sets for us.

It is the peak of autumn in some parts of the country. The trees are brilliantly showing us what they’ve got. Like a man or woman dressed to the 9’s for a night out on the town. They have pulled out all the stops.

Those maple, oak, dogwood, and hickory trees are in their glory grinning from ear to ear, showing all of who they are in this moment for the world to see.

But getting to that place took time. Those leaves first had to be buds on branches during the spring. Over the months and into the summer, those buds burst into bright light green leaves, then became bigger and a darker shade of green as the sun helped them with photosynthesis and the rain provided the water needed for nutrients to travel around the tree.

As summer came to a close, the days grew shorter. This was the first cue to the trees that things were changing again. During the weeks of decreasing light and temperature, the leaves slowly started to change color from their bright deep greens to the yellows, oranges, and reds we now see so spectacularly.

This transformation has been happening slowly.

It didn’t happen overnight. That change took time. And it’s a good thing it did. Look how much we appreciate and celebrate what Mother Nature has brought.

Many of us drive for hours and make special trips to view the leaves and even spend a long weekend or vacation taking her in.

Can you imagine how disappointed you’d feel if the leaves were green one day, red the next, then gone off the tree lying on the ground by day 3?

There would be no time to enjoy the process of change.

We’d miss out on what is provided to us for free, every year.

Time does not always equal money.

Do you notice this anywhere else in your life?

Where might the process of change be taking a while longer than you’d like?

What would happen if you tried to be fully in it and with it, while it was going on? Without judgment. What do you notice?

Your Turn:   What’s one place in your life where you can appreciate that change takes time? Leave a comment below, or email me, coachwithsusan@hotmail.com

And let me know if you liked the audio version if you chose to download it.

I am grateful to be able to spend some time with you virtually today. Thank you.

As always, take from here what works for you, share with your friends if you think they might benefit, and the rest you can leave behind.

Bloom On!

Seeds of Kindness Bloom and Bloom and Bloom…