A little Outdoor Therapy Can Change a Person

What is "outdoor therapy" anyway? I guess that depends who you're asking.

Sometime in the mid-nineties I was involved in a car accident. A diabetic man slipped into a coma while driving and ended up t-boning me at about 65 miles an hour. As you can imagine, the impact was pretty violent and caused a lot of damage. I'll save the details for another time, but a series of choices made from that day forward left me isolated and jaded, regardless of a life most would view as exciting and fulfilling.

photo by Justin Pitcairn

Several years back I started spending more time in nature. Interestingly enough, the times I remember thinking, man...I need to get out and get lost were usually the same times that I found myself over and over again. The world just seems to make sense out there. I began to see where I fit in here on earth. I began to realize that the chaos of the world is man created, and not how things are suppose to be. That's where my outdoor therapy began.

Not every trip out has to be a self realization journey though. A day on the trail with friends and family may be just what you need to de-stress and refill the tank to tackle whatever comes next. Camping, hiking, exploring, heck...just hanging out somewhere off the beaten path for a few hours unplugged will allow you some time of perspective and reflection if you let it. The point is to simplify, get away from the chaotic world we've created and spend time in nature watching and listening to the things bigger than us for a while.

photo by Justin Pitcairn

I could sit here and tell you all that outdoor therapy has done for me, or I can encourage you to get out there and experience it for yourself. Get out there and open your minds and hearts to something new, something healthy. If you are ever at a place where you feel sad, empty, bitter or even angry about what is going on in the world today, or more specifically in your life, clear your day, hop in your vehicle and go find a place empty of people and full of nature. Walk, sit, look and listen...because every day is a great day for a little outdoor therapy.

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