Why nature helps us feel part of something bigger, and why that’s good

Ah. Dem bones, dem bones, dem dry bones.

(The hip bone’s connected to the thigh bone, the thigh bone’s connected to the knee bone.)

Your body’s something special, you know.

Please note, I’m not coming on to you, merely pointing out that bodies are an extraordinary collection of components working together as one.

Broadly, we need most of the bits to operate as expected if we’re to be a living human being.

You’re more than just a thigh bone.

When you think about it, the way our anatomy works is not that dissimilar from the manner in which society functions, too.

Although we all work pretty well as autonomous units, our true potential is generally only reached when we’re part of something bigger, and this is often what gives our life meaning.

Sadly, if your mood is low (one of the times in life when it really can help to feel part of something bigger) you’re least likely to actually want to involve yourself in the kind of activities which this seems to entail.

So how can you be part of something bigger when you actually feel very small?

I’m convinced that one great answer is to get yourself out into nature.

A walk by a river or along a beach can remind you that there’s a big, beautiful world out there.

A stroll through a forest can promote a sense of awe when you stop to think about how long its trees have already lived.

Even some time in a garden or park can work, though, especially if you get up close and personal with a flower or shrub.

Study its form, breathe its perfume, wonder at its colours.

Some find their sense of meaning in formal acts of worship, and there’s much to be said for this, if that’s your thing, but taking a closer look at the world around you is another fine way to remind yourself that each and every one of us is part of something bigger.

One thought on “Why nature helps us feel part of something bigger, and why that’s good

  1. Just got in from loooong dog walk and the colours here are spectacular – even though it’s a dullish day here in Cambridgeshire!

    Need to give self a shake up, to get back out into the garden and rake the leaves and fallen pears – bit of work and fresh air in mild conditions including my mood!

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