In our modern moment, we are plugged in. Technically speaking, we are more connected than we’ve ever been. We can say hi to an acquaintance across the world with a few clicks of our laptop keys, we can watch any film or TV show ever created, anytime we want, we can choose to read a book, listen to a book, or look at a book on our screens. Wifi runs through most corners of our ultra-civilized world and our iPhones have become extensions of ourselves. It’s ironic that this kind of ubiquitous connectedness has led to a serious disconnection epidemic. When we spend more of our time indoors, under manufactured lighting and immersed in the world of screens, we suffer. Why do we suffer? We suffer because humans come from nature and as such, are the very essence of all that is wild, uncivilized, and alive. When we disconnect from the natural rhythms of our surroundings and our planet, we disconnect from ourselves and each other, opting for virtual “connection” instead of natural connection. The writer L.M. Browning wrote, “Being connected to everything has disconnected us from ourselves and the preciousness of this present moment.” What does this mean?
Nature Re-Connects Us
When we bare witness and in fact, step into, nature herself, we step into ourselves and our true essence. Feelings of isolation and disconnect lead to depression, anxiety, and a host of physical, mental, and emotional difficulties. Getting “back to nature” sounds simple because it is simple. When we adventure, walk, commune, and spend significant time outdoors and less time inside, we reap myriad benefits. L.M. Browning also wrote, “The cure for our modern maladies is dirt under the fingernails and the feel of thick grass between the toes. The cure for our listlessness is to be out within the invigorating wind. The cure for our uselessness is to take back up our stewardship; for it is not that there has been no work to be done, we simply have not been attending to it.” Perhaps one reason we don’t hear as much about the simple act of getting out into nature as a powerful healing tool is because no one has a stake in it. There’s no sales group selling “get out of your house, and get into nature” because as much as we try, we can’t own mother nature. We can only immerse ourselves in what she offers, which is a deep reconnection of self.
RedCliff Ascent is a therapeutic wilderness program, nestled between two mountain ranges in the high desert of Enterprise, UT. We focus on adolescents ages 13-17 who are struggling with various challenges from anxiety and depression, to school abandonment and the need to reconnect with their family. With over 25 years of experience, RedCliff uses a relational model and narrative therapy to drive an outcome and an evidence-based approach. RedCliff Recovery offers an experience like no other through a proven, 12-step, adventure-based wilderness program. For more information, call us today: 801-921-8488.