4 Simple Nature Practices to Heal the Weary Nurse: Guest Blog Post

Who cares for the nurse when the nurse has been so overstretched, she/he feels more like a Gumby doll that can no longer snap back?  Mother Nature, that’s who.

Indigenous cultures have long recognized the healing power of nature.  Ancient spiritual texts, including the Bible, often refer to the need to be with nature to restore.  Even our modern-day founding nurse leaders, Mary Seacole and Florence Nightingale were known to use nature in their practice.  Seacole used many herbal remedies to help the wounded Crimean War soldiers.   Nightingale believed that pure air, pure water, and light were some of the essential things necessary for a healthy healing environment and is quoted as stating, “nature alone cures.”

Many of us, including nurses, have steered away from many of the simple healing practices that nature offers.  Let’s take a look at a few that may be just what you could use now.

Earthing– after a long day of walking perhaps miles, no nurse wants to hear go for a walk in nature, although that has been shown to ease stress and improve well-being.  But, what about taking a yoga mat or a towel, finding a place in nature to lie down, a beach, or a patch of grass?  Yup, it’s that simple, lie down or sit on a beach chair and let your bare feet make direct contact with the earth.  Can you allow yourself twenty minutes to just be?  The benefits of earthing include reducing inflammation, pain, and stress.  Studies also show that it helps improve sleep, blood flow, and vitality.  

Cloud watching-while you are there on the ground allowing your body to connect with the earth’s healing energy, allow your eyes to gaze up at the sky and watch the clouds.  Allowing your mind to simply watch the clouds stroll by, morphing into various shapes and sizes, can reduce stress.  There is even a Ted Talk on the subject.

Birdsong-any natural sound can help us let go and trigger our mind to relax.  While the sound of soft rolling waves or falling rain may dissolve tension, birdsong has been found to have the greatest benefit on our mental health.  It’s best to try and get your dose of an avian symphony outdoors, but if that is not possible check out nature sounds on your music app or YouTube.

Water-get in, on, near, or underwater to help get into a state of Blue Mind.  Paddle, SUP, Dive, Boat, Swim, Surf, Fish, Float, Water the Garden, the possibilities are endless.  Water has the ability to dissolve stress and convert us into a state of peace.

To learn more about how connecting with nature enhances our health, well-being, and adds more joy to our lives, visit www.TheNatureNurse.com.

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