Do You Find Inspiration through Nature?

Free image courtesy kretktz on Pixabay.

Authors are often asked where they get their inspiration. The answer to that question is quite simply ‘anywhere.’ It could be through real life experiences, a conversation, a news item, music, film, or an image. We can even be inspired by nature.

Growing up, I always appreciated being surrounded by nature, mainly the stillness of the bush or the sounds of waves crashing on the beach. Taking in the solitude instilled a calming effect, both physically and mentally. This is where I felt at peace. It is also where I would find my ‘muse.’

Last year, through one of my acupuncture sessions, I learned about nature meditation. I had never heard of the term before but was surprised because this is what I have doing since childhood. It could also explain why, whenever I feel stressed, I need to be alone and go for long walks (living in the country certainly helps with that).

Free image courtesy Artur Aldyrkhanov on Unsplash.

Recently, hubby and I went away for a few days. It was very relaxing, as our cabin was situated near the Blue Mountains. We were completely off-grid – no internet, television, or phone service. We were switched off from civilisation, which is something we both needed.

I enjoyed the peace and quiet, being with nature, encountering wild goats (yes, we have them in Australia), kangaroos, water dragons, one rather large goanna, and a couple of lyre birds. I made the most of it, and hubby had no problem with me wandering off on my own. I walked maybe 2-3 times a day. I also swam every day, which was great as I even had my own private swimming hole. Hubby came with me once, commenting on how deep it was, reminding me of one of my own short stories. I guess, having an imagination can be a curse sometimes! 😉

From these daily ventures amongst nature, and with nothing with me but my imagination, I found myself not only relaxed, but also my writing inspiration for the next twelve months.

Do you find inspiration through nature?  Writers, how do you find your ‘muse?’ Do you do nature meditation?

Empty Nest Syndrome.

NangarNationalParksmallerEmpty nest syndrome is something that will not be in my future anytime soon, but recently my husband and I felt we’d better start getting used to it now. A few weeks ago, we spent one morning walking in one of the nearby National Parks, whilst our two teenage children chose to sleep the hours away. They’re both of an age now where they can spend some time on their own.

After spending many years as a family unit, it is a strange feeling to be alone with your partner. You begin to look at them with new eyes; re-acquainting yourself with someone you intimately know, yet they can also feel a complete stranger. Without the children, there appears to be a void that you need to fill without having to fill it with conversation about the children; your common ground.

Fortunately, my husband and I found that common ground by being out with nature; my husband talking about the environment (he has a degree in Environmental Science), while I was happy to admire our surroundings and take photos with my mobile phone. We explored an abandoned homestead and encountered numerous kangaroos upon our walk. We arrived there early enough to experience these things completely alone; it wasn’t until some hours later before we encountered another human being.

Being alone together reminded me of what it was like going out on that very first date; feeling self-conscious and awkward, yet enjoyable that you would like to do it again sometime. Empty nest syndrome may not be so difficult after all, so long as you take the time to learn to make such big adjustments gradually.

How have you coped with empty nest syndrome? Are you experiencing that now? What do you do as a couple without the children?

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Image © Debbie Johansson 2015