Embracing Nature’s Rhythms Can Improve Mental Health

Image of sunrise suggesting that embracing nature's rhythms can improve mental health.
Photo by Christine John

I recently decided to pay for a feng shui consultation. Having grown weary of trying to create change in my life, I decided to enlist some help in shifting the energy around my home. I asked the consultant to focus on blocking out urban noise that has become increasingly frustrating now that I am working at home. Knowing that most people would disagree with my choice to invest in this service, I carefully selected just a few to confide in. Well-meaning feedback ranged from skepticism to warning that the idea was just plain stupid. But it didn’t turn out to be stupid at all. In fact, it was quite brilliant.

The Feng Shui Consultant Suggest I Quit Giving My Power Away

I was a bit skeptical myself at first. The consultant I chose resides in England, and the only time we could meet was at 7:00 am my time. I sat in front of my computer with a cup of tea and waited for the feng shui expert to tell me that I had chosen poorly when purchasing my home. Instead, he excitedly discussed all of the great things about my house, like the open floorplan and the way light shines in the windows. I carried my laptop around, pointing out all of the problem areas, but the consultant’s enthusiasm did not change. “This is a great house!” he informed me. Not convinced, I asked the consultant how I could manage the noise coming in from outdoors. To my surprise, he told me that it was a good thing.

According to the consultant, the noise comes from a direction that has stagnant energy. He informed me that it was actually doing me a favor by moving that energy around. He did make a few suggestions, including adding a fountain near my back door. Incidentally, the fountain also brilliantly covers up the outside noise. At the end of the session, the consultant suggested that I quit giving my power away to things I cannot control and embrace the home. That brilliant suggestion in itself made the consultation fee worthwhile.

Image of desert suggesting that embracing nature's rhythms can improve mental health.
Photo by Christine John

Practices Such as Feng Shui and Moon Planting Can Improve Mental Health

So what exactly is feng shui? And what does it have to do with nature? Feng shui is a philosophy that involves arranging pieces in a living space to create balance with the natural world. The goal of feng shui is to harness energy forces and establish harmony between an individual and their environment. I think many of us think of feng shui as simply trying to face the couch in the right direction. But incorporating feng shui goes beyond Western design concepts. Instead, it emphasizes physical and mental health, success, and healthy relationships, which are brought on through positive energy flow. By tuning in to nature and embracing its rhythms, we can create good intentions, leading to positive thinking.

We can embrace the nature of rhythm in other ways as well. Gardeners who rely on planting by the moon’s phases are convinced that this ancient tradition produces healthier, more vigorous plants. The idea is that the cycles of the moon affect plant growth. Just as the moon’s gravitational pull causes tides to rise and fall, it also affects moisture in the soil. Therefore, it’s said that seeds will absorb more water during the full moon and new moons when moisture is pulled to the soil’s surface. This causes seeds to swell, resulting in greater germination and better-established plants.  The moon also impacts plant growth through geotropism, which is how plants grow in response to gravity. Roots grow downward in the direction of gravitational pull, and stems grow in the opposite direction. Planting by the moon’s phases not only helps us embrace nature’s rhythms but allows us to engage in an activity that is good for our health.

Image of river suggesting that embracing nature's rhythms can improve mental health.
Photo by Christine John

Embracing Nature’s Rhythms Allow Us To Become Connected to the Universe

With the increase of growing cities and urban areas and schedules becoming busier and busier, it seems we have all but lost our connection with the rhythms of nature. But enveloping ourselves in these rhythms helps form a connection to nature that can be transformative and healing. By spending time in nature each day, we can shift our attention beyond our ego’s domain and recognize that we are connected to the universe.

By embracing practices such as feng shui or moon planting, we allow ourselves to become more aware of nature’s ebbs and flows, which allows us to tune into our own. The urban clatter continues outside of my home office window. And I still sometimes curse and wish the sound would disappear. But most days, I am completely aware of how nature continues to exist despite the noise. When I focus, I can hear the birds singing, the wind blowing, and the rain falling. I am also aware of the energy flow in and around my home, which helps me connect even more to nature. And instead of feeling powerless over things I cannot control, I am now focused on the positive intentions that have been set. By tuning in to nature’s rhythms, I have also improved my physical and mental health.

Image of forest suggesting that embracing nature's rhythms can improve mental health.