Sunday, April 27, 2014

Embracing Canada's 30x30 Nature Challenge

Canada's 30x30 Nature Challenge 01 by Tatiana Dokuchic

Will I become happier & healthier by participating in Canada's 30x30 Nature Challenge?

Will my well-being be increased by adding a daily dose of nature to my routine?

I'm going to go out on a limb and predict that all these good things will indeed be coming my way!

It's not that my crystal ball is extra shiny this spring, it's just that I'm already convinced of the restorative powers of nature. I believe that devoting thirty minutes a day for thirty days will give me a boost and so it will, even if only because of the placebo effect!

That's why this challenge is just so perfect.  It gives us all an excuse to prioritize our rendezvous with Mother Nature and even encourages us with Daily Tips like "Find a quiet spot to listen to the birds".

In fact, this tip and the pre-survey that goes along with the challenge were a bit of an eye-opener for me. Turns out that while I'm already fairly active outdoors, I never take the time to just unwind & enjoy my surroundings.

My "relaxing" hours outdoors for the last two weeks of April totaled zero!

Now I could work up a good argument along the lines of "April in Ottawa isn't exactly conducive to relaxing outside" but the truth (nicely illustrated in South March Highlands: Little Gems) is that while I'll seek out & photograph a Trout Lily I won't/don't really "stop & smell" it.

So thanks to this challenge I'm planning on making a few small changes.  Along with the usual walking, gardening, photography etc. I'm determined to squeeze in a few minutes where I just stop & breathe.

Ahhhh ... I feel less stressed just thinking about it!

I've already persuaded a few friends to join in the fun but this is definitely an activity where the more the merrier so please consider becoming a participant and sharing your own thoughts & experiences.

Not convinced?  Besides my own observations, there's a lot of persuasive information out there including this Infograph (click to enlarge) from What's in it for you? The Big Disconnect

May Day (m'aider? - lol) here we come!!

Embracing Canada's 30x30 Nature Challenge by  on 2014-04-27 Will my well-being be increased by adding a daily dose of nature to my routine?

Images: Canada's 30x30 Nature Challenge and Trout Lily: Tatiana Dokuchic; 30x30 Listen Tip: David Suzuki Foundation Daily Tips; The Big Disconnect: What's in it for you? by

Find Tatiana Dokuchic on Google+


  1. I love this concept! But, we're still getting slushy snow here. If it doesn't stop soon I don't know that sitting in it for 30 min a day will help my life ;)

    1. Oh I feel your pain, Heather.

      We're just starting to get spring weather here in Ottawa & the month of April was pretty miserable. As I said, though I did manage to do a bit of walking I got zero time relaxing outside that month.

      Here's an idea of what the first day of spring looked like (photo by Sheila Lyttle-Clark (@LittleGoGo)):

      One interesting thing about the survey is that they use the first three digits of your postal code so they can take your climate into consideration.

      Hope you see sunny days soon!

  2. What a fabulous challenge and you have motivated me. This past winter and even this month of April have made it difficult to get out and breathe some fresh air. I so agree with you to just take some time to enjoy the surroundings. Your photography is beautiful by the way!

    1. Thanks, Thea! So glad I could spread some of my enthusiasm around.

      I find that the older I get the more of a push I need to get outside when the weather is less than perfect. I'm hoping this challenge will motivate me to enjoy even the rainy days more.

      The photo was taken from the Welcome Islands looking across Lake Superior to Thunder Bay. The place I consider to be heaven on earth :)

  3. Replies
    1. Excellent, Cynthia!

      You'll have to tell me how it goes for you. Enjoy!

  4. Love this concept! We really try every day to, "look up". There have been some close calls for my Mr. Mans, and the fact that he is a soldier really drives the fact home for us that the beauty of this life is astounding and for us, nature is our medication of choice! I am so happy to see this challenge and I will be paying extra attention for the next 30 days! :)

    1. I couldn't agree with you more, Laurie. Nature is medicinal and even the act of being grateful for it improves our well-being. Enjoy!!

  5. A great challenge! You're totally right that getting outside is one thing, but actually relaxing is totally another. I spent a good 30 minutes on the hammock yesterday, and am eager to repeat!

    1. The hammock sounds like an excellent idea, Tia, I'm going to brush off my garden chairs. Now if it would only stop raining :))

  6. Oh I definitely want to check that out! Good luck with your challenge!

  7. I love that idea. I wrote a post once on Forest Bathing - that's what the Japanese call their walks in the forest. Sounds nice, doesn't it?

    1. I've read a little bit about Forest Bathing, Dani. It does sound wonderful! Please feel free to post a link to your post as I'd love to read it. Thanks!