Mindset Basics: Mindfulness

Let’s get back to basics for a moment…chances are you are here taking this course because you have a true love and appreciation of the great outdoors. I know that is why I spend so much time out there and why I am passionate about helping other people get out there! The love of being outdoors and spending time in nature is more than just a hobby but has proven benefits for both our physical and mental well-being. Here are some of the potential benefits:

Reduces stress: Nature has a calming effect on the mind and can help reduce stress and anxiety levels.

Improves mood: Exposure to nature can boost your mood, and increase happiness and overall well-being.

Enhances creativity: Studies have shown that spending time in nature can improve creative thinking and problem-solving skills.

Boosts immune system: Exposure to the outdoors can increase immune function and lower blood pressure.

Increases physical activity: Engaging in outdoor activities such as hiking or biking can increase physical activity levels and improve overall health.

Improves sleep: Exposure to natural light can help regulate your sleep-wake cycle and improve the quality of your sleep.

Enhances cognitive function: Spending time in nature can improve cognitive function, including attention, memory, and concentration.

With all these benefits it is no wonder why we love the great outdoors, and one of the best ways to really enhance these benefits is through a mindset tactic called mindfulness.

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is the practice of being present and fully engaged in the current moment. Mindfulness is an important aspect of mindset in the great outdoors; when you practice mindfulness in the woods, you become more aware of your surroundings, your thoughts, and your feelings. This can help you connect with nature, reduce stress, and improve your well-being. In addition to the overall health and enjoyment benefits, actively practicing mindfulness will also help you develop better situational awareness.

Developing Mindfulness 

Developing mindfulness techniques is often easier said than done. Focus does not always come easily to many of us, especially in the modern hustle and bustle of our daily modern lives. It is important that we practice, and understand that sometimes it just won’t work. With practice comes improvement, each attempt will bring you closer to your goal! Here are a few methods you can employ to help:

Focus on your senses: Take the time to fully engage your senses and notice everything around you. Listen to the sounds of the birds and the rustling leaves. Smell the earthy scent of the forest. Feel the texture of the bark on trees or the softness of the ground beneath your feet.

Breathe deeply: Take deep breaths and focus on the sensation of the air moving in and out of your body. This can help you calm your mind and focus your attention on the present moment.

Move mindfully: If you’re hiking or walking, try to move slowly and with intention. Pay attention to each step you take and the sensations in your body.

Take a break: Find a quiet spot and take a few minutes to simply sit and observe your surroundings. Close your eyes if it feels comfortable and focus on your breathing.

By practicing mindfulness in the woods, you can deepen your connection to nature and reduce stress and anxiety. It can be a wonderful way to recharge and find peace in the beauty of the natural world, while also helping to develop your situational awareness skills!

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