9 years ago I set off on a journey to reconnect with nature.
At the time I had very little experience and I didn’t know the right steps to take in order to change my life.
I just knew that if I wanted to feel good about my place on the planet, that something had to shift with my relationship to the earth.
I wanted to leave the world better than I found it and give the future generations something to really live for.
Along my journey I’ve discovered certain key elements that I believe need to be developed if you want to cultivate deep connection to nature.
These are the missing components that I incorporate into all my nature connection mentoring projects. Let me share them with you.
#1 Sensory Awareness Skills
Understanding of nature comes primarily through sensory awareness in the five senses. Seeing, hearing, and feeling are core human skills, yet very few people ever take the time to develop them.
One of the fastest ways to jump-start your journey into nature is simply to go outside and start looking around.
Consciously use your mind to pay attention & be aware. It’s such a simple thing to do, and this one activity will help you develop a solid foundation for deeper awareness.
There are many layers of depth to this skill. Each new experience adds to your ability to derive knowledge and understanding from the natural world.
#2 Observation Skills
While somewhat related to #1(sensory awareness), the ability to make good observations is not necessarily possessed by everyone who has strong sensory skills.
Astute observation goes one level beyond simply being aware in your senses. It’s no longer just about the raw data coming in through your eyes and ears.
Observation is really about about how you can begin to extract meaning from what you notice outside. The way you do this is by looking at relationships, sequences & patterns through time.
The vast majority of intricate patterns & relationships happening out in nature are essentially invisible to the beginner, but once you start tuning in, then an entire world opens up.
Observation teaches you to understand all of nature through the interactions of it’s parts. The whole world comes to life with a natural history that can be read just like any book.
#3 Questioning Skills
Questions drive us to pay attention in new ways and make good observations. This is a core skill that almost always gets ignored by people who want to learn about nature.
The trick is to get good at asking questions that call on your sensory observations and start tracking down solutions.
All the best educators whether in science or the arts have relied on the power of questions to open up new ideas in their students.
The Socratic method and discovery based learning methods help us form our own ideas and conclusions based on our own personal experience of the world. With less answers and more questions learning is no longer about rote memorization.
With better questions you’ll get better results.
#4 Goalsetting & Success Skills
It’s one thing to have the intention to reconnect with nature. It’s a whole other thing to progressively take action and move yourself forward on the journey.
This fact is the same as everything in life.. if you can’t set goals and stay motivated then you’re just not going to get the results you want.
If you want to go deep into nature it’s very important that you connect first with your innermost motivation for learning.
Why is learning these skills important to you?
What is motivating you to take action?
What are you most curious to observe & learn about?
Study these 4 critical skills and you will begin to get the kinds of results that you want to see in your life.