Walk to Talk
Let’s explore the benefits of nature on human connection.
In the past I have looked inward with my relationship with nature. I have knocked on nature’s door when I have needed her, and she’s always welcomed me, and somehow given me what I needed. We take a lot from our natural environment, not just in the physical sense but also in a mental sense. Nature was teaching me what it was to be clam and balanced.
Now I feel balanced, for many reasons, I have stopped looking inwards towards my own relationship with the landscape and have begun to look outwards at the greater benefits of nature on human connection. And I started to notice people connect better when they are in nature and away from the technologies built to connect us.
When walking in nature with a friend I found conversation to be genuine, deep and meaningful, and I always felt closer to the person I had shared the last few uninterrupted hours with. Walking and talking is an incredibly simple and beautiful way to experience true connection with loved ones or strangers, as it invite us to share thoughts, resolve issues, laugh, cry and just be open, in a safe and pleasant place.
If you’re not yet convinced, maybe the below reasons will make you grab those shoes, call a friend and head to hills.
Walking in nature offers truly uninterrupted time, something we seem to be in limited supply off with our phones and email pinging every second. You won’t find yourself multi-tasking, or feeling that tense feeling something might come along and interrupt you ( I highly recommend to leave the phone at home to make the most of this)
For the most part when we go out for a walk, we are giving ourselves time to do just one thing, to put one foot in front of the other, with no other expectation. We know we’ll be out for a certain amount of time, and we’re happy to give this to ourselves. We’re not very good at this either these days. Not only are we giving ourselves time, time also seems to dissolve when walking, so relax and enjoy the pace.
Not just limited to walking, nature has a great ability to drown out daily worries. To be honest I’m not 100% sure how it does this, maybe nature can put your life into perspective by allowing you to slow down and be present, and therefore focusing on the here and now rather than the future or past.
This one I think is something walking is best at. Rather then facing each other when you talk, for the most part there will be little eye contact as you look forward to walk. Looking into someone’s eye when you talk is important but it can also feel very exposed, and looking away can make you feel less confident. The act of walking takes all this away, so look forward and let the conversation flow.
Feel free to share your own experiences or why you think nature is good for human connection below