BBC Breakfast is running an awesome campaign this week called #wildbritain. Much of it links into the latest research that being out in nature, and particularly the wilderness, has profound effects on our wellbeing, especially our mental health.
People always want ‘scientific proof’, of course, that it ‘works’, which seems a little out of context with our fundamental need to be in nature, but therein lies some of the problems we face in the modern world of technology and city living.
As a society we’re happy for doctors to dish out anti-depressants to our teenagers to quickly ‘solve’ their problems, because there is ‘scientific’ proof that it works, yet seem oblivious to the healing power that nature can offer at times of extreme stress, depression, lack of connection with ourselves and others, sleep problems and so the list goes on. You only have to watch some of the footage on @bbcbreakfast this morning to hear how being out in nature alters our state of mind. Research suggests it can last up to 30 days. Does taking 1 anti-depressant pill last that long?
In this age of busyness, stress and chronic overstimulation, we know that success often comes at a price. You only have to read a few lines in Araianna Hufftinton’s blog posts to know that it’s almost at epidemic levels. So many of the world’s most accomplished leaders and entrepreneurs find it impossible to switch off or make time to connect with themselves. It’s for that reason that we’re working on some incredible retreats for leaders, journeys that will take them into the wild to reconnect deeply with themselves and therefore connect on a much deeper level with others. This inner work will, without any question, produce profound shifts in how leaders within organisations lead their people through these times of huge change and uncertainty. Nurturing that connection is essential for real productivity, creativity and happiness as the demands of a fast-paced world draw our attention outward and away from the source of our abilities (our intuition), inspiration and the ability to think outside of the box. These retreats will each provide a bespoke programme for leaders to deeply reconnect with the best in themselves and each other and in the stunning beauty of wilderness landscapes. The results are as profound as those filmed by the BBC this week.
We’re also teaming up with the Wilderness Trust in the coming months too, but in the meantime, if you’re stuck at your desk thinking that nature is way beyond your reach, take a look at our short workshop with Nick Michell on Re-Wilding Yourself. It’s no substitute for the wild, but it’s a big leap forward from how you may be feeling right now.
Keep reading for Nick’s story on connecting with nature here.