Friday is Earth Day, and as inhabitants of this place, we want to show gratitude to where we live. John Muir, Scottish-American environmental activist and author made this appreciation and preservation his mission. He is often called the “Father of the National Parks”.
In his 1894 The Mountains of California, Muir said, “Fresh beauty opens one's eyes wherever it is really seen, but the very abundance and completeness of the common beauty that besets our steps prevents its being absorbed and appreciated. It is a good thing, therefore, to make short excursions now and then to the bottom of the sea among dulse and coral, or up among the clouds on mountain-tops, or in balloons, or even to creep like worms into dark holes and caverns underground, not only to learn something of what is going on in those out-of-the-way places, but to see better what the sun sees on our return to common everyday beauty.”
So I ask: What are you learning from the world around you? From within you? The benefit of going outside is to expand your thinking. Below are three ways that leaders help to get their teams out of the office.
- Take your one-on-one on a walk. If there is not something serious you need to talk about, suggest that you go on a 30-60 minute walk in lieu of you regular one-on-one meeting. Enjoying a long walk together will get good energy flowing before you know it – being active together can spark more creativity.
- Volunteer outside. Designate a certain amount of time to go outside. During one of our Fierce days of giving, we volunteered at an urban garden project. Find similar opportunities in your community, there is always benefit to giving back while you are going outside.
- Share outdoor experiences. During a regular meeting (or create one this week), have everyone on your team choose to share one of their favorite natural places on earth. Have them bring a picture or cue that represents that space. Have them talk about how they feel when they are in that location. The exercise can be a powerful practice in appreciation of an outdoor place and encourage people to go seek those escapes for themselves.
How will you take your team outside?