Many of us spend hours behind a desk, in school, at the library, with our nose in a book or staring at a television in order to learn and grow. We may turn to or look up to our teachers, peers, parents, elders, and other people around us, for new information or in hopes of receiving advice on ‘life’. Though too many of us often look past the most important teacher of them all, that being Mother Nature herself. Here at tentree we believe that by spending more time outdoors you will learn some of the most important things you will ever need to know, in order to ‘succeed’, be truly happy and have your senses put back in order.
‘Take a quiet walk with nature and it will nurture your mind, body and soul.’
This is a great metaphor for life. Growing up we instill values and beliefs in our children. We teach them resilience, life skills, deciphering right from wrong, the importance of standing up for yourself and being assertive, what it means to be a good friend, a brother or sister, and much more.
Like people, the strength of a tree depends on the depth on its roots and the thickness of its trunk. The stronger our values, the more support we are surrounded with, people caring for, nurturing and teaching us, the more we will grow and the stronger we will become. So that when we’re put through storms (wind, rain, thundershowers) we will more likely be able to fight through it and still be left standing tall.
Everyone wants to live on the top of a mountain, but few people want to put in the effort to get there. Those as the bottom only see what is in their site, a few trees, part of a lake, one side of the mountain, grassy fields, rock piles and some wildlife perhaps. Sure it may be pretty, but just imagine what you could see from the top! It may mean facing your fears, overcoming obstacles and facing hardships, but you will gain a whole new perspective. The higher you climb and the more you persevere, the better the view and reward.
Some things take time. Healthy growth and changes often happen at a slower pace. We can’t rush things that we want to last forever, like relationships for instance. Also if we move to fast we can miss things. Take time to stop and look around. Stay present. Breathe. You never know whom you may meet, what you may learn, what accidents you may prevent, and what more you can get out of life, simply by being patient. Good things come to those who wait.
Whether out hiking, climbing, running, biking or taking part in some other outdoor activity, Mother Nature is constantly putting us through tests. We may not have control over certain situations and not be able to obtain our goal, but we can indeed control the way we react.
You may have a had a super ‘rad’ weekend planned with friends, backpacking and camping in the backcountry, though the forecast calls for thundershowers and cold temperatures. You could get upset about it, dwell on it and be miserable. Or you can instead accept it, make different plans, reschedule or view it an opportunity to try something new. You may not reach every summit you set out to conquer, and that’s ok. Stay optimistic!
Mother Nature does not belong to us, instead we belong to her and we must respect all that is she has to offer us. When we hit the trail for a hike, or head out camping we learn to pack out whatever we pack in, and leave everything the way we found it, or in even better shape then when we found it. We also learn to respect the wildlife by staying on the marked trails, doing our research ahead of time, knowing what to do when encountering wildlife and paying attention to signage.
This way of being should mirror our lives off-trail as well. By lending a helping hand, a listening ear, being generous, standing up for and sharing our advice and experiences with others, we are making the world a better place. Together lets not only protect the world we play in, but protect, care for and respect one another as well.