The Midwest, especially Michigan, hosts a beautiful and diverse population of trees — from native species like the Balsam Fir to the stunning North American Native Sugar Maple — Michigan foliage does not disappoint. The dense, thick forests bring the awe and fill us with a sense of wonder and calm contentment — a place where the world makes sense and a sanctuary where we’ve found our nook.
Have you lost your awe in the hustle and bustle of everyday living? Has your drive switched to a human doing and not the innate, human being? Reclaim your awe and breathe in the fresh Michigan air at TreeRunner West Bloomfield. Follow along in today’s post and learn about why the forest is so advantageous to reclaiming your awe!
Reclaiming Your Awe Amidst the Trees
Your awe. Do you know what it is? Do you know that experience that makes you feel so small and so insignificant, but in a really enlightening way? The awe experience is meeting your baby for the first time, seeing the vast depths of the Grand Canyon, or experiencing sound after a cochlear implant.
Sometimes our awe becomes muddled and muted because daily living is stressful and sometimes we feel like if we take a deep breath something else will cave. Maybe you’ve been diagnosed with a chronic illness or your car was deemed totaled, or it may even be the state of the world that weighs heavy upon you. So reclaim your awe.
How can you find awe at TreeRunner West Bloomfield?
At our obstacle course and zip line experience, the trees stand tall in the lush Michigan forest, and this is where reclaiming your awe begins.
There are many studies centered around the power of nature and the psychological evidence that it lowers levels of aggression, positively impacts kids’ cognitive growth, and may even help you live longer. Now there is current research indicating that living near a forest is beneficial. In a recent German study, it was concluded that being in close proximity to forestland is linked to a better functioning of a central part of the brain. When comparing the environment to that of an urban jungle (man-made, city living) people who walk the fringes between forest and city are better able to cope with stress.
The part of the brain that lit up in this study was the amygdala. The amygdala is a cute, almond-shaped structure that is notorious for processing emotions including both anxiety and fear. Correlation doesn’t always prove causation, so test out this theory yourself! Do you feel better surrounded by century-old trees? Do feel better connected and yet so insignificant when you forest bathe?
At TreeRunner West Bloomfield, we can help you reconnect and reclaim your awe.
Find your individual awe – If the stressors of everyday life are bogging you down and you’re beginning to feel like your awe has been short-circuited, get in the forest! When you come to TreeRunner West Bloomfield, hook into a harness and start exploring our treetop obstacle courses. Come early in the morning or later in the evening between non-peak hours and use our adventure park as a refuge and self-care practice. Feel the leaves brush the palm of your hand and breath deeply. Work your way through the challenges and come out on the other side renewed in awe and reaffirmed wonderment.
Find your awe with others – Finding your awe with others can be beneficial for everyone because the awe can serve an altruistic function in that it dissolves self-importance and creates what is referred to as the “small self, ” and when less ego is involved, the better it is for everyone! The small self can then more advantageously help us to form social groups creating better social bonds. When we get into our awe, the world expands as we feel connected to something bigger than ourselves.
Bring a group of friends or people you work with for a treetop adventure and experience and build the awe together. Revel in the beauty, the clean air, and the ability to work through challenges and obstacles with the people around you. This awe will create bonds and make you a better friend and coworker.
The Awe in Numbers
Are you curious about who experiences the most awe? In an online quiz that has had over 6,000 responses and its findings:
- The older you get, the more awe you experience, with the awe-effect peaking at age 60.
- Women experience awe more than men, but only slightly.
- Your socioeconomic status (SES) and location don’t really factor in at all.
- Those who are spiritual experience more awe moments.
How to Spawn an Awe Moment
- Take pictures.
- Ask thought-provoking questions to those you’re journeying with.
- Stand in silence and listen to nature.
Life can get hectic and stressful, leaving us to try and deal with its wake in a healthy way, and the awe can get lost or short-circuited. Reclaim your awe in the trees with nature, and take a trip out to our adventure park and wander the grounds individually, reconnecting with your small self or in a group where you all can commune and together to find your awe.
Join us in a treetop adventure today as the trees engulf you and swallow the stress and help you reclaim your awe.