Grow Some Happiness! Finding Joy Outdoors In Difficult Times

By June 15, 2020 Outdoor Living
Grow Some Happiness! Finding Joy Outdoors In Difficult Times

If you’ve been stuck at home, had summer plans cancelled, have been experiencing the anxiety and turmoil of current events – or all of the above – you could probably use some happiness and joy in your life right now.

The outlook may seem somber, but even in the midst of these most challenging times, there is still plenty to enjoy and appreciate in the world – and it starts right in your own yard.

peaceful back yardThe environment around you has a tremendous effect on your mental and emotional well-being. Surrounded by the beauty and serenity of nature, it’s harder to hold onto those anxious and negative feelings, and easier to glimpse hope and happiness.

In fact, science is on your side. Scholars across disciplines agree that when you engage with nature – and yes, that includes the natural landscape right in your own yard – it heightens feelings of well-being.

Engaging with the natural world also has the benefit of fostering more positive engagement with our fellow humans, something that’s more important than ever right now.

During times of uncertainty and turmoil, when it can seem like fear, anger and despair are constant companions, it’s vitally important to care for your own mental and emotional well-being.

It’s just a fact of life – if you don’t care for yourself, you’re going to have a really tough time caring for anyone else. Whether that’s your family or the world at large, peace, happiness, and compassion start inside you.

reservoir viewOur mission here at Grounds Keeper is to bring the beauty, power and pleasure of nature right to your doorstep, and create the kind of environment that will bring you happiness and joy throughout every season, and every year.

When we asked some of our customers to share how happiness is growing in their own outdoor spaces, the answers were heartening.

Landscaped Flower Bed“It has been a life changer.”

We were inspired to seek happiness in outdoor living when we received this unexpected note from a customer.

When I walked outside and saw the new mulch and freshly trimmed bushes it made my heart happy. During this very difficult time in our country, with so much being unknown, seeing ‘Spring’ has made a difference in my life.

I am grateful for everything you do. It has been a life changer.

– Sandy, Long Branch, NJ

Find your own joy right now! Walk outside your door and look around. What makes you smile? It could be a special planting, a colorful garden, a favorite bit of décor. Come back to that whenever you feel stressed or down.

Don’t worry if your yard could use some sprucing up. Focus on the best parts. And if you decide that you need help creating a space that is truly your own personal happy place, we’re here for you.

cherry tree“We just love walking outside into our special place.”

Fresh air, serene views, fragrant blooms, an encounter with wildlife – all these things bring us joy and emotional well-being. There are so many places to look for small pleasures, and you don’t need a big yard to do it. All you need is a moment to engage your senses.

Finding happiness outdoors is a multi-sensory endeavor. Look around for the sights that delight your eyes. Then close them and listen for the sounds of wind, water, birds. Inhale the fresh scent of grasses, flowers, even mulch and soil. Don’t forget to dig your hands into that soil, something that can be as beneficial for your soul as standing on it!

bleeding heartsHere’s how one of our customers recently experienced joy in her own outdoor space.

I went outside this morning and there was our new cherry tree – favorite spot of a variety of hungry birds!

Then I walked across our deck to our babbling brook garden – a favorite spot for us to view even from our front hall.

On Easter morn I sat there looking out the window as a red fox ran by looking for breakfast.

What a joy!

Then I walked east to look out over my rock garden to the reservoir – always a commanding view especially calming at sunset.

On to catch the scent of our viburnum-fragrant spice bush – so sweet – and finally I walked up to our front wooded area to see our bleeding hearts in their full glory.

I make my way through the forget me nots and breathe in the fresh air.

We just love walking outside into our special place.

– Janie and George, Colts Neck, NJ

Try it yourself. Find something in your own yard that engages your various senses in a positive way. What do you see? Hear? Can you touch anything soft or hard, smooth or rough, to experience different sensations? Can you smell the blossoms or greenery? How about that unique scent of running water over stone, or the hot sun baking pathway bricks? If you have something edible in your garden, pluck it right now and savor it.

If any of your senses are feeling left out, let us know!

spring garden

“We couldn’t have picked a better time to invest in our yard!”

If you often find yourself saying things like, “Next year…” Or “One of these days…” Then we bet you can appreciate this from one of our customers, who decided that “someday” was “now”.

While being “locked up” in this awful time, we truly appreciate the beauty of all the plants in our garden. It’s so fun to walk and see all the different plants and flowers growing and blooming. We couldn’t have picked a better time to invest in our yard!!! The crab apple tree is to die for this year!!!!

– Lynne, Red Bank, NJ

crab apple tree

It’s easy to get caught up in routine, to leave passion projects unfinished, and to put things off that you might want to do but never quite prioritize. Once in a while, we’re reminded that we only have a limited number of “somedays”, and that the time to seek happiness is now.

You don’t need special plans or a special time or place to do it. Just stop, take a deep breath, and look at what’s growing right in your own yard. Appreciate the moment and let the beauty and power of Mother Nature rejuvenate your mind and spirit.