I escape outdoors every chance I get. It’s the instant sense of freedom, space and endless opportunity that draws me back out into nature, time and time again. I’m based in the U.K. and we have so many incredible, wild places we can visit right here at home.
Being immersed in the wilderness is a constant reminder that nature is so much bigger than I am – a reminder I welcome on those days when I’m struggling to make a small decision or I’m facing a problem. In nature these little issues shrink, just by the sheer comparison of their size to that of the mountains, the trees, or the ocean. In nature stuff is just happening, intricate systems are operating without anyone overthinking them. Sometimes I go home with an answer, but more importantly I always go home with a new, shifted, or restored sense of perspective.
When I’m outside I feel light, unrestricted, and alive. It’s where my body and brain feel most connected, working together to negotiate the terrain and overcome challenges, be it bad weather, rough terrain or a suspicion I might be on the wrong path…. And it’s in overcoming those challenges that I find confidence. It’s a constant shift in my own perspective of what I can do. Being outdoors is like having mother nature sat on my shoulder reminding me, “Sarah, there’s no such word as can’t”. I take that confidence with me into other areas of life, knowing that if I can overcome the challenges thrown at me by mother nature, then I can handle anything work and relationships can throw at me!
Moving my body in nature sharpens my mind and increases my level of focus. There isn’t a lot else you can focus on when you’re being pelted with rain or swept along by the wind. Even in the calmest of conditions, things outside are everchanging and to me this is what’s exciting! I find myself constantly needing to know what’s beyond the next tree, over the next mountain, or across the water.
Creative ideas seem to come out of nowhere when I’m outside. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve thought, “This is the best idea I’ve ever had!” as I fumble my way through heather on the side of a mountain or wade through a boggy valley. But it’s not such a random phenomenon as it sounds. Is it any wonder that ideas come to me when I’m in a place where I feel my best, most like myself, unjudged and not rushed? If you want to do good in the world, get outside. We can learn everything we need from what’s out there.
Being outside is a necessity, a basic human need. Food, water, shelter - and freedom to roam. Isn´t this what makes us, well, human?