Taking a break from pandemic-induced stress

There’s nothing like a pandemic to get our stress hormones cranked up. The minute-by-minute news coverage, the travel bans, the cancellations, the stock-market roller coaster, the enhanced hygiene and safety protocols being implemented to try to stem the tide of COVID-19, and the worry associated with all of it are taking a toll on people world-wide – me included.

When I get stressed I turn to my most trusted method for mental and physical healing. I get outdoors and spend time with nature. The sunshine brightens my mood, the fresh air and exercise increase my oxygen intake, and the bonds that I build with my plant and animal friends improve my relationship with all the living beings around me. Being outdoors and present with non-human living beings relaxes me, reduces my overall stress levels, and helps me cope, act, and live more productively and mindfully.

Today during my wanderings so many wonderful plant friends were blooming or beginning to bloom, showing the promise of spring and reminding me that life presses on, even amid chaos and fear in our human world. These tiny blooms brought me hope and joy and calm. So, I share them with you and invite you to take a few moments to enjoy their beauty and bask in a minute of gratitude for the little things.

Blueberry flowers, berries to come
Golden Alexanders just starting to show their colors
Early saxifrage in their delicate form
Violets – heart warming and delicious
Lobed tickseed
Spicebush (and ladybug)
Sassafras buds ready to burst

If you are feeling stressed or worried about this global pandemic, your work, or anything, I encourage you to get outdoors. Be with nature. Let it heal you and help you and make you stronger.

Stay healthy, ya’ll!

Peace to you.

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