The Healthful Effects of Communing With Nature

Written by Braiden on October 28, 2010

Sometimes I just want to stop all the noise I face in everyday life.

Like many people, I receive anywhere from 25 to 50 e-mails a day through several different e-mail accounts. Some are spam or things I don’t care about; many require instant attention and response.

Add to that the additional communication streams of Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin. Now, not only do we have to respond to personal and business e-mail accounts, many of us also have to deal with Direct Messages and Facebook Pokes.

You Tube offers instant videos; Pandora our own personalized music channels; blogs on every subject vie for our attention; television offers hundreds of channels; Google serves up the bounty of the World Wide Web with the simple insertion of a few well-chosen key words.

With all these distractions, often I feel like my head is about to explode, and I don’t imagine I’m alone. . .

One remedy is communing with nature, in whatever form that might be. Look out your office window from time to time if there is something beautiful outside.

Arrange some flowers. Soak in some sun over lunch hour. Take a walk.

Even if none of these options is available, the good news is that scientific studies show that even looking at soothing pictures of natural scenes, such as the one above, will give you a few moment to think. . .meditate a few moments. . .and relax and refresh.

Who wouldn’t be touched by the majestic scene shown above–clouds and mountains, land and water–forming a harmonious whole?

Have you communed with nature, even if only via a favorite photo, today?

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How to Live Before You Die

Written by Braiden on October 14, 2010

A friend sent me a link to Steve Jobs’s commencement address he gave to the graduating class of 2005 at Stanford University. Entitled, “How to Live Before You Die,” the 15-minute speech was ripe with good ideas and suggestions not only for graduates but for the rest of us.

Divided into three parts, I found the third part, about 10 minutes in, the most compelling for Five More Minutes With purposes. In this part of his talk, Jobs said we should, “Live each day as if it were your last. Look in the mirror and live today as if it were the last day of your life.

“No one wants to die, yet death is the destination we all share and that no one has ever escaped.

“Death is the single best invention of life. . .it is life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new.

“Your time is limited, so:

1. Don’t live someone else’s life.

2. Don’t be trapped by dogma.

3. Don’t let the noise of others drown out your inner voice.

4. And, most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition as they somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

Have you listened to your heart, really listened to it lately? Are you living someone else’s life? Do you live each and every day as if it were your last?

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Head in the Clouds Redux

Written by Braiden on October 7, 2010

One of the joys of creating the Five More Minutes With Web site is that I get to do exactly what I want herein. As a “creative” from the first days of my existence, I appreciate not being edited or coached and just being able to express my true thoughts.

Over the past seven months, I’ve discovered I really like photography, especially shooting clouds and sunsets.

Spencer thinks I’m crazy as I shoot through the car windows, waiting for street lights or columns on bridges to pass so I can get the “perfect” shot.

And often the photos are anything but perfect, with the windshield glass reflecting back into the camera or an errant branch blocking part of the view.

But something about that imperfection can be endearing as well. You know these aren’t slick commercial photos; they are simple shots straight from the shooter’s heart.

So with clouds quickly becoming a recurring theme in my Five More Minutes With posts, today I’d like to share some more of my cloud photos with you.

Inspiring clouds

Starburst clouds

Fluffy turquoise clouds

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