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Go outside

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About Tsh

Tsh is the founder of this blog and lives in Bend, Oregon with her husband and 3 kids. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.

As you start this week—go outside. And I don’t mean that in a figurative, go outside of yourself sort of way. I mean, literally, put on your shoes and go for a walk around your neighborhood.

The weather has really dropped here the past week, and we are all-in on the scarf-wearning, boots-donning weather. I love it fashionably, of course (who wouldn’t take knee-high boots over a swimsuit?), but I’ve been reminded once more how much weather affects my mood. My surroundings affect me more than anyone I know; I can feel it in my bones when the skies are grayer and the air is chillier. Even if I’m inside all day.

In fact, I feel it even more when I stay indoors. After two days of feeling blah last week without any logical explanation, it dawned on me—I had hardly been outside. I think I checked the mail, took out some trash, and ran a quick errand to a store, but otherwise, I was home. And in just 48 hours, I was feeling down, frustrated, cloudy-headed, and tired. Boy, was I tired.

fall walk

So the next day, I spent most of the morning outside with the kids. The day was still gray and the high was still 50, but I felt lightyears better by lunchtime. I came back home energized, refreshed, and actually in the mood to pick up the house. A complete 180 from the previous two days.

So as you start this week, do what you can to go outside, just a little, every day. Drop off the kids at school and then go on a solo walk, or bring them with you and enjoy the morning air. Or go on a post-dinner walk with the whole family and talk about your day. If you’ve got the time, find a wooded area near you and go on a hike.

Get air in your lungs and work your muscles. It doesn’t have to be a marathon—just getting out of the house and moving will do wonders for your attitude and outlook on life. There are all sorts of studies that prove outside time an immediate antidote to depression, but you don’t have to even be depressed to find respite from fresh air and the natural world.

fall leaves

We spend so much of our lives indoors, and that’s really a shame, I think. We can all spare half an hour per day. Get out there, and experience creation. Your body and soul will thank you for it.

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Comments

  1. Simple, excellent advice. Exactly what I expect to find here, and, oh man, did I need the reminder!

  2. Great advice!! Being someone who suffers from chronic depression I have to carefully monitor this. Other things I find helpful; get out around people, stay away from refined white flour ( a huge culprit).

  3. Being a first time mom with a 6 month old baby girl I can often get myself caught up in the ongoing cycle of laundry and dishes in between the feeds, naps and diaper changes. I love the outdoors and this week need to make much more of an effort to get out there! Great advice, thank you.
    Jessica´s latest post: {Be Inspired} Closure by Bryan Tucker

  4. My husband and I have been drooling over your pictures of the leaves changing colors on Instagram all week. Ours are just starting to change but the colors are not as dramatic as the ones you have been taking pics of. Love seeing some of them here in your post today.
    Victoria´s latest post: Finding Friends At Church

    • Aw… thanks. I never had these fall leaves until I moved up here, being originally from Texas. But hey, whatever the scenery, there’s something magical about real outside air, eh?

  5. This is me! Others don’t understand how much my surroundings affect me (and weather in particular) so it is a gift to read your post on this fall morning. I feel like someone else gets it. Thank you.

  6. I so agree–I especially notice when my kids haven’t been outside enough (they start running laps around the kitchen). Even in the winter, I find that bundling everyone up is worth the effort.
    At least that’s what I tell myself as I try to find the thumb-holes in those little mittens ;).
    Jenn @ A Simple Haven´s latest post: Day 14 :: Hospitality With Littles

    • It is. I forget sometimes, because it takes FOREVER here in Oregon – I feel like that mom in A Christmas Story, and then they want to stay out 30 minutes, tops. But yep, still worth it. Something about that fresh air…

    • I second this. I can tell from my son’s sleeping patterns if we haven’t been getting enough outside time. And yes, bundling up for an Eastern Washington winter takes some effort, but a beautiful winter morning outside (preferable in the snow) is one of my favorite things.

  7. avatar
    kathe hall says:

    Simply, I just love your blog. It kick starts my week in the right frame of mind. Its easy to be negative, but it takes practice and being present to be positive. Thank you for doing what you do. You Have rejuvenated my outlook on domestic life.

  8. Yes! It is so important not only for us, but for our kids to get out! We have recently been enjoying the fall weather with our 6 month old baby, Willow, in our front yard. She chills in her pack and play, I usually read, or chat with my husband, while our older son rides his bike. The neighbors come and go, and it’s so refreshing to talk to them in person and see what’s new in the neighborhood. Brings me back to simpler, less-hectic times. Thanks for the gentle reminder! :)
    Heather´s latest post: DIY: Spring Fresh Cloth Diaper Detergent

  9. This is so true. Since moving to Scotland and living a pedestrian life we are outside a lot more. I have found that I feel so good even though I am 31 weeks pregnant. The fresh air (even if it is cold and rainy most of the time) does wonders both to my spirits and my health.
    Johanna @ My Home Tableau´s latest post: Flying internationally with children

  10. Good reminder! I have so much on my “to do” list I often fail to get outside.

  11. This last week I felt better (emotionally) than I have in a really long time, since surgery that put me in menopause this Feb. I truly think all of the long walks we took and the bike ride at the beach helped my head more than anything. Especially the beach, I immediately feel at peace, creative, and just happy anytime I’m near the ocean.

    Love this post.
    Angela´s latest post: Please Keep Doing Things Your Children Can Do For Themselves

  12. Thanks for the push out the door! It was what we all needed this morning.

  13. Oh man you’re SO RIGHT! This time of year I deal with seasonal allergies so I’m inside more than usual and I can really feel it in my energy level & attitude. Thankfully ragweed is on the waning side and boy am I ready to spend more time outdoors. In about 1.5 – 2 weeks when ragweed is finally gone I’ve got all kinds of fun outside chores in mind – can’t wait!

    ~Taylor-Made Ranch~
    Wolfe City, Texas
    Taylor-Made Ranch Homestead´s latest post: In Sickness & In Health…

  14. Great advice. I try to take a 20-minute break every day at 4 and walk down to the creek behind our house. This time of year, with the clear air and beautiful leaves, it’s even more a treat than usual. Thanks for the reminder.
    Carol Covin´s latest post: Who First Broke the Sound Barrier?

  15. I am the same way! Last year I really fell into a funk with the gray skies. I love being outside and have been taking daily walks to enjoy this awesome weather! :)
    Stephanie@Mrs.Debtfighter´s latest post: Enjoy Writing? Earn Extra Money at Bubblews!

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