Every day, no matter the weather, I make sure to spend at least 20 minutes outdoors. Usually, I am running or walking around during this time, sometimes with a podcast and sometimes without, but I never skip the 20 minute session.
Here’s why: Being outside makes me happy, revives me and reminds me why it’s so important to protect this earth.
I spent a lot of time indoors before mid-2018 because I felt like there was no reason to be outside. I constantly felt as though if I wanted to leave my room or my house, I had to have a destination. And during that time, I struggled with mental health and self-esteem (a lot).
When I studied in Australia, I realized how much I liked being outdoors. I took extended walks on the riverside, spent time studying and reading in the parks, and tried to wait in green spaces whenever I could. I quickly realized that my mood was immensely brighter and happier when I spent time outside, no matter the weather.
Since I made that discovery, it took me some time to actually implement it. Honestly, it wasn’t until the back half of my semester in Northern Ireland that I actually made it a goal of mine to go outside every single day. To do that, I started by chasing a step goal, figuring that would give me a real incentive to be outside (actually still keeping up with this!).
Nowadays, making sure I get outside time requires little to no effort. I rarely have to go out of my way to accomplish it, and if I do, it’s almost surely the one thing I am looking forward to the most. I even go out when it’s raining cats and dogs, just to get some fresh air and enjoy nature.
Whilst I go outside for personal reasons, I also realize that going outside as much as possible grounds me in my reasons to protect the environment. By spending so much time outside four walls, I more easily remind myself why I am desperate to save the climate. I remember why I care so much about reducing waste, going vegan, and trying to be more green. It’s easy to live a more eco-friendly life when you’re doing it for the places right outside your door, and not just the abstract beaches in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.
I honestly believe that if we all spent more time outside structured buildings, we’d be happier. We’d also be more inclined to take action when we’re called to do so because we want to protect what’s right on your front stoop. Instead of asking “how’s that going to affect me?” when talking about palm oil and Indonesia, we’d be more focused on discussing, “how can I do my part?”
Climate change is arguably the most pressing issue in our world today, and if we stand idly by, then we’re not just doing a disservice to ourselves, but also to all those who are living with us right now, not to mention those that will come after us. Trying to spend some time outside is not a crazy thing to do, and honestly, I would argue is the bare minimum of what you should do. And, at the end of the day, I can’t possibly find the words to recommend it enough.
Love, xx Giorgia