With more and more of us back in the office instead of working remotely, everyday work-related stress is beginning to creep back up to the pre-COVID-19 levels. Not to mention the economic changes and increased financial concerns that translate to pressure at work!
According to The American Institute of Stress:
A Walk in the Woods, no not the Bill Bryson book or the Robert Redford movie, an actual walk through the woods. For me this has always been the best way to clear my mind. A simple one-hour walk in nature after a stressful day is always a calming, stress-reducing way to improve your mood. Featured in this Time Magazine article, the Japanese call it Shinrin-Yoku (Forest Bathing), opening your mind to all 5 senses: sight, sound, smell, touch, and taste. That last one might sound strange, but I have a few secret trails that lead me to mulberries and a wild raspberry patch 😁)
As a graphic designer, a walk in the woods provides an added benefit – inspiration! I find it around every bend, and every twist and turn in the path. From the brightly colored flowers to the cool water cascading across the rocks, inspiration is all around. Listening to the breeze rustle the leaves in the trees, the sound of a stream splashing by, I turn my head up to follow the colorful birds and other critters chasing and playing through the treetops. The smell of evergreens, the crisp, cooling autumn air erases away the stress and takes me to another, more serene headspace. After a peaceful, leisurely walk, I return home rejuvenated and feel the weight on my shoulders has been lifted, and according to sleep.org., this makes for a better, deeper, more restful night’s sleep. So, turn off your phone, put on some comfortable shoes, and hit the trails!
A happy side effect of my love of nature is the scenic Wisconsin photography seen here, all of which I took within one hour of the Madison area. In most cases I just find a comfortable, secluded spot and watch everything happening around me, and the photos just present themselves.
Some great Madison-area hiking trails:
Picnic Point Marsh Loop
Cherokee Marsh Loop
Edgewood College Nature Trail
Capital Springs State Recreation Area
Todd Duane, a Madison native, is a Madison College graduate with a degree in Graphic Design. Todd started at Econoprint/Powderkeg in 2001 as a part-time Graphic Designer and part-time Proofreader in the design department. Now an award-winning Senior Creative Designer, Todd’s knowledge and attention to detail has earned the respect of many high-profile clients. In his free time, Todd enjoys photography, hiking, reading, movies, and discovering new disc golf courses throughout the state and beyond. Visit his design portfolio at tzone.myportfolio.com or follow him on Instagram as he travels the wilderness seeking new and exciting places! www.instagram.com/tzone007/
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