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An Hour in Nature: Sarah Humphries

For Sarah Humphries, beauty, health and wellness are more than personal interests: they’re integral to her profession. Sarah is the founder of SHA, an award-winning lifestyle communications agency headquartered in Sydney. For Sarah, time in nature is an important way of maintaining balance and finding moments of magic:

 What’s your favourite thing to do in nature?

There are many things I love to do in nature, however when I’m tired or feeling anxious about life, nothing is more healing than an ocean swim. Every aspect of it is calming, from the drive down, to the anticipation of jumping in (or when it’s the depths of winter, fear of jumping in!). I’ve often wondered if there is a word for the first moment your head comes out of the water after you initially dive in. For me, at least, that moment is magic. The fresh water on your face is intoxicating (especially in the winter), and everything looks a little more alive.

Describe your connection to nature: what positives does it bring to your life? 

I love getting outside with my two kids. I once heard someone say ‘green time after screen time’ and have made that a mantra in our house. Whether it’s TV or the dreaded iPad, we get the kids outside after screen time and we run. Kick a ball. Play tag. It’s a beautiful way to connect with each other as well as nature.

What are your fondest memories of spending time in nature?

I have many, however, a recent one is of an afternoon I shared with close friends. Each year we travel down to the south coast of New South Wales, and we stay at a local caravan park. It’s a simple holiday. Last year, we discovered a small beach, with a giant sand dune, crystal clear water and waves the perfect size for those of us a little scared of waves. And we had it all to ourselves, for hours. In just one afternoon this captured everything that was right with the world (when the news reminds us of everything that is wrong).

Many of us are time-poor and might not get out into nature as much as we’d like. Any suggestions for a quick nature-based pick-me up? Something sensory, experiential…?  

If you can’t get to a beach, or walk to a park, my recommendation is just to get outside at night time and look up. Take in the stars and the moon, even if it’s only for a minute. There are stars! And a moon! They are billions of miles away, light-years even, and you get to see them! You and the planet you are standing on are a part of that. Be amazed, just like a child. It is amazing.

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