Below is a portion taken from a chapter in my new book, More Than Enough:  Discover Your Limitless Potential and Live Your Bravest Dream.

Often, on a daily basis, we’re handling life as if it comes at us, fast and furious. We spend our days putting out fires which causes many other emotional, physical, and psychological issues.

We can’t sleep. We clench our teeth. We forgot to breathe. We forget who we are.

The stress from the pressure cooker of life increases in the body and we become anxious, angry, and can even sink into depression. All this from our everyday life of living!

The past decade has been very stressful in my personal life. Life events such as family member deaths, surgeries, divorce, computers stolen, becoming an empty nester, moving from the family home, illnesses, floods, and more have turned my life inside out. Nature was an integral part of healing me through this difficult period.

As stress mounted in my life, I knew it was time for me to take a different route. I was at a point in my life where my health challenges and past traumas were affecting my daily quality of living. I became concerned as the winter months in the Midwest were approaching. I tend towards depression and Indiana’s cloudy winter days combined with cold temperatures and snow were not sitting well with me. Thus, I made a decision to become a snowbird and flew south to the ocean!

Typically, a snowbird is a retiree who chooses to avoid the snow or cold by living in a warmer temperature climate for a few months out of each year. I’ve always been drawn to various beaches for short vacations so this was an easy decision for me, as I knew it would provide a natural location that would support my healing. Two solid months of rest, relaxation, and being.

The daily walks on the beach, viewing sunsets over the ocean, and relaxing on the Island became an integral part of my routine that supported my body as it healed. When I walked on the sand, I envisioned my past traumas being taken out into the ocean, never to be seen again. Each step meant something else that was holding me back from the life I really wanted to live was let go. Emotions were released from the deepest of cells in my body. Some days I would walk with tears of sorrow. Other days, tears of joy.

Regardless of the reason, the ocean and sunsets provided a background of beauty and support that assisted me in a myriad of ways.

Playing in nature helped me to:

  •   Mend my broken heart.
  •   Release self-limiting beliefs that were holding me back.
  •   Release old patterns and open up to unlimited possibilities.
  •   Reconnect to my soul’s desire to enjoy the beauty of life.
  •   Reconnect with my own spark of hope.
  •   Renew my commitment to my own self-care and self-worth.
  •   Renew my spiritual connection.
  •   Renew my commitment to pursue my greatest dreams.

Recently, I spent several days hiking the beautiful Mount Shasta in Northern California. This trip in nature was a last minute add-on to a week of non-stop meetings. The quietness of the forest almost immediately reset my body and mind. Hiking seems to be very healing for me. With each foot in front of the other, my mind wandered, but, mostly, I tried to Be Still and do a walking meditation to keep silent. I wanted to be present. Soak in every noise, every tree rustle. Hear every step and each bird chirping. It didn’t take long before I had forgotten all about the Los Angeles traffic!

To read the full chapter and book in its entirety, click here More Than Enough:  Discover Your Limitless Potential and Live Your Bravest Dream.

[Photo Above:  Siesta Key, Florida]