Annie Libby - It’s right there, on the other side of the window pane; so close, you can imagine the crisp, cool smell of the fresh air. You take a deep breath – and suddenly realize that’s just the plug-in air freshener you’re smelling. It’s mid-afternoon and you’re falling into that familiar slump – you should be working, but instead you’re staring out the window, watching the birds flit through the trees. The great outdoors is practically begging you to get out there!
When’s the last time you spent quality time with nature? Most of us barely get outside anymore, particularly on the days we're shackled to our desks. Adults spend around 22 hours of their day locked away inside their car, office, or home – that’s over half of your day that you aren’t getting any vitamin D. (And no, opening the window to let the sunshine in doesn’t count!)
Why is vitamin D so important? We need the vitamin D our bodies absorb from sunlight to keep our bones and teeth healthy, and to fight off diseases. Spending time outdoors can boost your cognitive function, creativity, happiness, self-esteem, and even your immune system! Being alienated from the outdoors for too long can have serious physical and mental consequences, an effect that’s been dubbed nature deficit disorder.
If your 9-5 job is leaving you starving for sunlight, try some of these quick tips to help you get back in touch with nature – you may find yourself feeling a whole lot better!
How many times have you promised yourself you’ll get outside more – next weekend for sure, right?
You're less likely to back out of a plan if you know that someone else is counting on you. Arrange activities with your friends, or volunteer with outdoor groups. Whether you make a date with your friend or your pooch, having someone to hold you accountable to will keep you motivated.
Dress for the Occasion
You meant to go hiking last weekend, but it was just too cold. You got home from work, instantly changed into sweatpants, and well… you know the rest of that story.
One of the main excuses for spending time indoors is the weather. Teach yourself to put on a t-shirt and jeans the moment you arrive home from work. Soon, it will transform into a ritual that kicks off the outdoorsy part of your day. In winter, use layers to trap heat against your body, and in the summer, opt for breathable fabrics in lighter colors to stay cool.
Invest in Outdoor Living
You don’t even have to drive very far. With an RV, it doesn't matter if you stay on your property; all that matters is that your set of wheels will tempt you to put out some chairs, crank out the awning, and gaze up at the stars – all while soaking up the great outdoors.
Find Excuses to Get Outside
An RV will give you more purpose and motivation, but it won't help much during the actual workday. With a little creativity, you can schedule some outdoor time into your 9-5 routine!
Take phone calls and meetings outside when you can, or spend your lunch hour on a park bench. Plan an extra ten minutes into your commute, so you can park a bit farther from the office and take a walk. Try biking to work, if your route permits.
Your Body Needs the Outdoors
From growing plants in your own garden to getting involved with a local hiking troupe, or investing in a brand new RV, there are options suited to every lifestyle. Dedicating even a small amount of your week to spending more time in nature will quickly have an impact on your life, significantly improving your productivity, focus, and confidence.
The more time you spend outside, the more you'll realize that it's an easy habit to form – and more essential than you think.
Annie Libby’s passion for RVing and “experiencing life” was inspired early on when her parents packed up the camper every summer in search of the best campgrounds. Today at every opportunity, Annie and her family enjoy hitting the open road in their 2006 Winnebago Sightseer, affectionately named “Isabella.” Annie Libby lives in San Diego, California.