Today’s podcast talks about a very important, but often overlooked part of the nature connection mentoring process…
This is a 6 minute recorded segment from my group mentoring program discussing how to learn about nature with storytelling & the importance of documenting observations.
Many people who seek to connect with nature don’t realize there are actually 2 key stages to the learning process:
First – Go outside and spend some time immersing yourself in nature.
This is the obvious part that everyone figures out.
Whether you’re tracking animals, doing a sit spot, building shelters & forts or listening to birds… These activities all fall under step one, which is all about having high quality experiences in nature.
However, if you want to really go deep with your connection to nature, it’s equally as important to complete step #2.
Step 2 – Come back home and communicate your stories & observations to help lock in the memories & facilitate deeper reflection.
Storytelling is one of the oldest ways that humans learn, reflect and share wisdom amongst each other.
Whenever you share stories about nature, your brain lights up with the memories of birds, plants, trees, and all the other things you encountered outside.
Storytelling requires that you engage your sensory memory, which provides instant biofeedback about your habitual awareness patterns & blindspots in the forest.
You’ll notice as you tell stories about nature that some of your memories are quite clear, while others are much more fuzzy.
These blank spaces in your memory give actionable clues about how to push your awareness deeper next time you go outside. This is the key to deep nature connection.
If you have an experienced nature mentor in your life, simply tell them what happened while you were outside as though you’re reliving the experience through sensory memory.
- What happened?
- Where did you go?
- What did you observe?
- What discoveries did you make?
- What made you curious?
Even if you don’t currently have anyone to share with, you can gain many of the same storytelling benefits by writing your stories down in a journal.
Journaling empowers you to be your own mentor by getting your experiences out of your head so you can see them from a new perspective on paper.
Then you can look at what you wrote and ask:
If I were mentoring someone who shared this story with me, what questions could I ask to help them look deeper & make new connections?”
This is a great way to practice the conversational skills of nature mentoring, while also helping yourself to connect more deeply with nature every time you step outside!
If you want to have great success with your nature journaling, I created a program called the nature memory journal which walks you through all the key steps and includes a step-by-step journaling template to guide your reflection.