Beauty in nature often unappreciated


Meilani Bitanga

Freshman Jaelynn Holloway enjoys the outdoors at First Landing State Park on March 23.

Meilani Bitanga, Staff Writer

With the hustle and bustle of city life, more people turn a blind eye to nature. Nature exists all around, but it sometimes does not get the appreciation it deserves.

Beauty that surrounds us can have powerful effects on the senses and emotions, so why do people take something so precious for granted?

Teenagers and adults find themselves deprived of nature because of multiple distractions, such as screen time, busy schedules, and the even more popular gym. With work, school, and indoor facilities, people often forget to embrace what nature has to offer.

“I’d say school does take up a lot of our time,” said junior Michelangelo Andreatos. “Whereas if it didn’t, I could be doing stuff outside more.”

Proven by numerous health specialists, the presence of nature can greatly reduce fear, stress, and anger.

“We are seeing changes in the brain and changes in the body that suggest we are physically and mentally more healthy when we are interacting with nature,” said University of Utah researcher David Strayer.

This is not about long walks in the forest or spending hours outside. One piece of nature, no matter how big or small, can have a huge impact on people. Even in urban areas where not many plants reside, nature can be found if people decide to become aware and mindful.

“I find that even when I’m just walking in the neighborhood my whole attitude changes,” said freshman Jaelynn Holloway. “I could be stressed one moment and calm the next.”

The first step to appreciate nature is to actually step outside. In addition, stay aware and stay present; nature facilitates mindfulness, and even the small doses help. Just get outside and enjoy what the world has to offer before it disappears.

Look down at the ground, and find a dandelion in full bloom. Look up at the sky, and find clouds that go on for miles. Nature never lurks far and always presents itself in front of people, but only if they decide to look.