Man or woman was not meant to spend all day under fluorescent lighting in an indoor place without windows, natural light, or sun. While modern life often forces us to work and live in less-than-ideal conditions, we often have to spend our time away from nature and where we feel most comfortable. Whether it is a factory, an office, a clothing store, a mall, or a movie theater, we spend somewhere between 80% – 90% of our lives indoors. While many people consider this to be a normal part of life, I would argue that while it may be ‘normal’ in our modern age, it is far from healthy for all of us.
While we do have limited choice on where we live, where we work, where we eat, etc., I would encourage everyone reading this to remember that we as human being are most comfortable, free, and healthy when we are in a natural environment. In nature whether it is a beach, a jungle, a mountainside, or a forest, while intimidating at first, once you get used to being in the great outdoors, it is hard to get used to being inside or routinely indoors again. You never lose that yearning to be breathing fresh air, swimming in fresh air, and cooking fresh food over an open flame.
I truly believe that this is kind of environment is what is best for our health and well-being. When we are in a natural environment, the stress is less for all involved, we tend to be more social especially if we must cooperate to fish, to hunt, or to cook food together, and there is a great sense of satisfaction achieved from climbing, hiking, fishing, swimming, or starting a fire that you can’t get in other environments.
If you do not have the great outdoors near you, at least make the effort to get outside on your balcony, your rooftop, or even your garden if you have one. I promise that you will feel refreshed from getting out of the florescent light and into real sunlight. While being indoors is not a bad thing, I do think that we have overindulged in modern life in an effort to keep ourselves comfortable rather than challenging ourselves by dealing with the outdoor elements.
No matter where we come from, all our ancient ancestors had to deal with the elements. That is why being out in nature is most rewarding because that is what our ancestors had to deal with for thousands of years. Modern agriculture and industry have been around for maybe a few hundred years in terms of its adoption by most of humanity. We are still more accustomed to being out in the jungle, savannah, or forest rather than inside a city or a factory farm. It is unfortunate that most of our time at work or at home is indoors because there is a lot that can be done outdoors and for which we can socialize with each other in different ways.
If you cannot get outdoors as much as you want, try to at least take 10-15 minutes out of your day to go for a walk or to get lunch and sit outside. If you are having a bad day, I can guarantee that having the sun shining down and the breeze hitting you can really improve how you feel, if only for a short while. Instead of going to a bar or a movie on a warm, spring day, encourage your friends to go hiking or to go hang out at the park instead. You can also make use in some places of an outdoor gym where you can lift weights, do calisthenics, or even practice Yoga with the wind at your back.
When you’re at work, see if you can’t encourage your colleagues to do a working lunch outdoors one day a week when the weather’s nice or to do an event outdoors if possible. A team building event, as cliché as it sounds, can be a good idea to spend more time outdoors if you can ask your boss to do a retreat somewhere where you can be outdoors part of the time or to maybe go hiking, try out kayaking, or walk around the city together to boost your comradery or teamwork.
Society may be pulling you to go from your car to your office to your home and to do it all over again each day but that is no way to live. Try to find the time to get out of unnatural environments and be in nature again, whatever kind of nature that is. You are not meant to be indoors for 90% of your life. Instead of being in your car, walk or bike to work if you can or try to have a work meeting outdoors if you’re remote or can ask your colleagues to do it there.
Taking a trip or vacation where you’re mostly outdoors, exploring new environments, and trying different activities like snorkeling, scuba diving, bungee jumping, skydiving, etc. are ways that you can broaden your horizons and enjoy what the wide world has to offer. Life will get very boring and repetitive if you are constantly going from one indoor environment to another indoor environment without mixing it up. You should remember that it is no way to live and especially no way to live healthily.
Remember to get yourself outside at least 30 minutes to an hour each day. You owe it to your mind and body to put yourself in a natural environment, whichever one is most comfortable to you. A change of scenery can do a world of good. If you’re feeling like you have no energy, are going through the motions, and are just plain bored, getting outdoors and into nature may be the closest thing to a cure. Try to encourage others to do the same as it is healthier, and you’ll feel better from having involved others to be in nature with you. Man or woman was not meant to be indoors for most of our lives and I hope that you all will spend more of your lives outdoors in natural environments and less time indoors under fluorescent lighting.