Nature. Nature lends itself so beautifully to a daily practice or meditation. One can take a wide focus on nature and think super macro, or get lost in all the little details. A daily relationship with nature can be broad, or very, very narrow. Isn't that lovely?
I'll share three different nature based daily practice ideas with you today, along with a more standard These Three Things prompt related to flora and fauna. All ideas can be scaled down to your immediate environment, or scaled up for those who can get outside. As always, choose whichever gives you the feels. Or use these to inspire your own. Just start somewhere.
1. Can I see your ID? Identifying the greenery around us is a wonderful way to get to know your surroundings and learn a fun new fact each day. Whether you use a guide identification book from your home library, get a hand from Google, or use an app like iNaturalist, begin cataloging the plants and trees on your property, your local park, or your windowsill. Start with one specimen a day. You can keep track of your new knowledge in a journal with collaged iPhone photos you print yourself, NOTES on your phone, Google docs, Airtable. Whatever feels right.
2. Same place. Different time. There is so much noticing to be done when we allow ourselves to slow down. Find a favorite place in your yard, on a hiking trail, your neighborhood park, or outside your window, and choose a different time of day to visit the exact same spot each day. Record all you notice in writing, voice memo, video. Look, listen, and feel. What are the sounds? The intensity of light? Smells? Use all of your senses. You can stay for 5 minutes or an hour, and the duration can vary day to day. You decide.
3. Field Notes. This one is my favorite. I have been working on a collection of Field Noted for about 8 months. It's my favorite new project. This suggestion is broad and can be as abstract as you want. One of those wide focus ideas. Take notice of one thing in the natural world every single day. It can be from anywhere. Inside your home with your indoor house plants, in your yard, from your window, on a walk. Make an observation and write it down. This usually leads to other discoveries. Perhaps the correct identification of a common housefly, a deeper knowledge of plant care, or a noticeable pattern in the day and time of curious raccoons. Be open. Start.
Nature Related Prompt
List three places in the outdoor world that feel like home. They can be anywhere. You can think about why they feel like home or not. I'll start.
1. Galway, Ireland. The brightest green moss I have ever laid eyes on. I'm still trying to recreate that color.
2. The fountains outside the Metropolitan Museum of Art. How they look from a distance. The smell as I get closer. The faint spray of mist in the air on a breezy day. Knowing that I am almost inside the place that holds nearly all my childhood.
3. Jones Beach, New York. The temperature of the sand, especially in the winter. Sneaking away to the beach during school long before summer. Blankets covered with sand. The wind. The feeling of jumping wave after wave, after wave. The water pressure of the foot showers. A good friend who doesn't make you dry off before you get in the car to head home.
What did you learn today? Join me by using the #thesethreethings and commenting below with your own These Three Things. I want to hear what you are learning, laughing about, and living through.