Bernadette Petrie tells us the healing power of nature is key to our mental health..

As I write this piece the rain is pouring down. It has, in fact, been raining since yesterday evening and shows little sign of letting up. I’ve also managed to tweak my back, so my dog walk in the rain which is always so refreshing won’t be happening. Confined to home, I’m seeing evidence both on social media and outside my window that people are getting really good at working with the weather, rather than resisting it. 

One such example is a nursery school in Argyll who when faced with a flooded garden ensured all the children wrapped up and were in wellies to experience a magical time splashing through the puddles. “Our garden was flooded! So in true ABC style, we got our wetsuits and wellies on and took to the puddles! We poured lots of washing up liquid in the puddles to make them bubbly – jumped in them, rode the bikes in them and even slid into them from the slide! 

Of course, you may have picked up this issue on a beautiful sunny day and wonder why on earth I’m talking about rain, but here’s the thing – life and the weather are unpredictable. One day life might feel all sunny yet another day it could be totally gloomy and the same goes for the weather.  

But we can learn from this nursery and use what ever weather or situation we are dealt with to co-create some magic memories and to love and cherish who we are in any given moment. We can choose to surrender to mother nature and go with the flow. Choose to make lemonade when life throws us lemons. Do that in every aspect of our lives whether it’s rain or sunshine, and we will be more present, less stressed and being on this earth will feel a lot more fun in the process. 

We waste too much of our precious energy resisting what life sends our way, but when we shift into welcoming and creative mode like the children and staff at the nursery did – the very best of us is revealed. 

Over the last few months I’ve been getting the same message coming through and that is, that being in nature, surrounded by the healing power of nature is key to our mental health. And being barefoot, even in the rain, is liquid gold to the soul and has profound healing on the body. 

So whilst my dogs snore on, I’m going to take me and my twinged back out into the rain for some barefoot therapy. I hope you get some barefoot time outside today too – and whether it’s wet, dry, sunny or windy, embrace this day and make a memory that you will treasure for many winters to come!


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