Nature, My Mindfulness App

Charlie Hartwell
Feb 26, 2018 · 2 min read
Image for post
Image for post

A couple years ago, at a Mindful Leadership Conference, I was asked the question, “What is your favorite mindfulness app?”

The answer was simple: Mother Nature.

In my role at Bridge Builders Collaborative, I’ve had the opportunity to test, evaluate, and review opportunities to invest in many mindfulness and meditation apps. According to many sources, there are now more than 1,000 mindfulness apps in the iTunes and Android stores. There’s likely to be a whole lot more. The proliferation of mindfulness apps has been interesting to watch — and in future blogs, I’ll speak about some of the varieties and characteristics designed into different approaches and platforms.

As more people are benefiting from some mindfulness apps, I have a concern about using technology as the primary source of connection.

From my own practice, I find that nature is the best mindfulness app for a host of reasons. First, when in nature I feel connected to the Earth, connected to other beings. I feel a reverent awe for the creation of the universe and the beauty I can see, guiding me to connect more deeply to the beauty inside of myself. In nature, I find connection to the collective consciousness, to something that is greater than myself. I find joy in witnessing the beauty of a sunset, the flight of a hummingbird, and the elegance of a pink rose. The more present I am in nature, the more awestruck I become.

Over the past several years, science has been validating the relationship between nature connectedness and happiness as well as psychological well-being and mental health.

I encourage the use of mindfulness apps and the intention behind many of them. The apps offer an invitation to find opportunities during the day to become present, grounded, centered, focused. Clearly, they serve a purpose in our technology enmeshed lives, and it is important to remember that connecting with nature is a technology free path to presence and flourishing. I encourage everyone to spend more time outside, enjoying the beauty of Mother Nature.

Learn more about Charlie at ShiftIt Institute and check out Bridge Builders Collaborative partners and portfolio. Follow Charlie on LinkedIn and Twitter @ShiftIt_Inst.

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch

Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore

Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store