Make Them Go Outside

You want them to be safe—that’s understandable. You are busy and tired from work and life—that’s perfectly reasonable. So yeah, loading up everyone in the car to go for a hike is not high on your priority list. Letting them play by the creek behind the house makes you anxious. Roasting in the sun at the beach—which they’re not even going to say thank you for—you could do without. 

But you can’t. And neither can they. 

In John Muir’s book A Thousand Mile Walk to the Gulf, he writes, “Let children walk with nature, let them see the beautiful blendings and communions of death and life, their joyous inseparable unity, as taught in woods and meadows, plains and mountains and streams of our blessed star, and they will learn that death is stingless indeed, and as beautiful as life, and that the grave has no victory, for it never fights.”

We learn about ourselves and the world when we go outside. We experience the beauty of existence. We are present. We are stimulated. We learn. We are whole. It might be easier to lay down on the couch. It might be safer to keep them in your eyesight at all times. It might be exhausting or uncomfortable. 

But it’s also wonderful. So make them walk with nature…and if you can, walk with them. We can all use more of it.

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