Last week, I came back from an amazing vacation in Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park where I spent most of my time doing what the Rockies are best known for – hiking. I still can’t get over the epic views! And last night I made reservations for this year’s second camping trip. Yay! I’m super excited and can’t wait to be out there. I have a newfound love for nature! I love the outdoors and I love the idea of being out in the fresh air, hiking in the wilderness, gathering around the bonfire and sleeping under the stars.

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Spending time outside has always played an important role in my life. I find that there is something indefinitely healing in nature’s patterns – the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring blooms after winter snow. We as humans are essentially wired to be outside, in the wilderness. Unfortunately we don’t all have the opportunity to spend as much time as we would like outside. But we can help ourselves and others make time through little changes.

I wasn’t always an outdoorsy person. I was essentially a bookworm, happy in the company of a book, anywhere where I could just flip pages. It was a river rafting trip down the Ganges that changed everything. For the first time in my life, I slept under the starlit sky. For the first time, I truly went outside my comfort zone and realized this is where amazing things happen…outside your comfort zone. For the first time in my life, I truly appreciated nature! And there’s been no looking back. I now choose to #optoutside

Here’s why I love spending time outside and why you should consider it too:

HAPPY: Spending time in the great outdoors, hiking, camping are activities that make me the happiest. I feel happy and strong when I’m hiking and climbing mountains and these feelings follow me home.

PERSPECTIVE: There’s something about nature that makes you forget all your troubles. I think if there’s anything that nature teaches us, it’s perspective. It’s the power of nature that will make you feel how small your issues are.

CREATIVITY & INSPIRATION: Everyone knows how wonderful a good walk outside can be for your mind and body. Being outside in the fresh air clears your head and enhances creativity. Some of the best ideas hit me when I’m out for a walk by myself. It’s not surprising then that nature is the best source of inspiration.

A BETTER PERSON: Over the past few years, I’ve taken up more of travels that give me an opportunity to be in the midst of nature, for instance camping or ‘forest bathing’ as the Japanese are now propagating (it’s not exactly a bath but just means being in an environment where you can engage all your senses). And let me tell you that I’ve always come back home a better person. I feel more calm, kind and generous with those around me or maybe like I said above, it’s a shift in perspective.

ALIVE & VITAL: Spending more time outside makes me feel alive and I feel good about myself. I feel a deeper connection to myself and the world around me.

UPLIFTS MOOD & RELIEVES STRESS: Nature is an instant mood uplifter for me. If like me, you’re a fan of Jane Austen’s novels, you would have observed that the heroines in her novels always go marching out when they are upset or need to figure something out. Needless to say, one finds solace in nature. 🙂

I feel we all should try to spend more time outside, especially since nature as a resource is free of cost, and many of us can access it if we simply step outside our door. You don’t need a passport or a membership to belong here. Trust me, it feels great to take a break from that screen and it’s healthy too!

Are you an outdoors person or do you prefer the concrete jungle?

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#OptOutside: Why I Choose To Be An Outsider #travel #nature #thegreatoutdoors #camping #hiking

Why Being an Outsider is Good for You #OptOutside #greatoutdoors #nature #camping #hiking #explore