As I have studied the concept of how busy we all are and how our lives are driven, in large part, by our digital connections, I have been drawn again and again to the encouragement of spending time in nature, without device(s), most usually without other people. It seems we have very little time or inclination to be quiet, to physically move and to think.
This notion came home to me a few weeks back as I was ordering new workout tops from the Columbia Sportswear Company. Truth be told, after working as an attorney in a law office for more than 31 years, I cannot wait at the end of a long day to put on my workout clothes...hence, the need to order more tops. After I put in the order, the following popped up on my computer screen: "Thank you for choosing Columbia! Now, we encourage you to spend the time before your order arrives doing something in the Greater Outdoors. Which means getting off the computer. So go, already. We'll be here when you get back." This made me smile, as I thought - how very true.
Dr. Eric Topol, one of the world's top physicians and foremost cardiologists, formerly of the Cleveland Clinic, talks of the need to take time in nature, to exercise and to be quiet. He says that he personally never takes elevators and always walks up the stairs. He claims that he exercises one hour each day, no matter what, no matter how busy he is, and I have a feeling he is a very busy man. He does not hesitate to talk, from a health perspective, of our need to get outdoors and into nature and to move. He believes that our sedentary, digital lifestyle is killing us, literally.
This concept is not new. John Muir (1838-1914), the famous American naturalist, who promoted the creation of national parks and reservations, said, "Keep close to Nature's heart...and break clear away, once in a while, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean."
The evidence is in, as we lawyers like to say. We need to heed it.
Article by: Marti Starkey
Harrison Moberly, LLP