The idea is to dedicate 30 or more minutes each day to the great outdoors. It doesn’t matter where you are (how urban or wild environment), what you do, or what your possibilities are regarding mobility, access to nature etc. – you just need to make sure you get out.
There are two reasons why I think it’s so great:
1. Though our family spends a lot of time outdoors anyway, the challenge reminds and forces me to go, see, explore even more than I do in my usual life. With the challenge in mind, I tend to be more alert, I’m more aware and open.
2. The community is extraordinary! The people joining the challenge ‘meet’ each other on Facebook, in a closed group called Rewild Your Life 30 Day Challenge Group, and about 1700 people from all over the world have joined it so far. The beauty of the community is the judge-free, openly supportive, and love of life and nature kind of approach to everyone and everything.
This time around I’ve decided to focus on wilding our kid. At 2,5 years of age she is enjoying the nature more by the day. She gets so excited about butterflies, ants, flowers, and stones of different sizes and shapes. (Though I’d appreciate more time for me, I don’t feel the need to be alone in nature – I’d rather spend my alone time reading, writing, enjoying a moment of great coffee in a downtown bar, having a massage, or going to sauna.) Having a chance to experience the woods with our daughter I consider a luxury I don’t want to miss out on.
Just recently I received a comment from one of my readers, wondering about the whole free range parenting idea that I’ve written about here and here. I realised I need to get my mind and heart into it again: Our way of parenting is to try and let her discover as much as possible in her own terms and time. We let her touch, taste, climb, jump, and even stumble and fall, if there’s no immediate, great danger. By having a looong leash, she seems to be gaining self-confidence and courage. (The definition isn’t a “comparing to” type, knowing all kids are different and develop individually.) She loves playing outside in our garden alone with the dogs, and she’s rather adventurous, yet she has a healthy, cautious relation to anything new or strange. And as parents we’re all for encouraging her orientation to nature and life.
So starting next Tuesday me and my girl are going to be out – in the garden, the meadows, the woods – at least 30 minutes per day. And I’ll be posting photos here, on the Facebook page, on my personal fb page, and on the Rewild Your Life challenge fb group page.
I’m also going to finish two books: Richard Louv’s Last child in the Woods and David Elkind’s Power of Play. I’ve had the books for over two years, it’s about time to read them through! I’ll probably flip through William Crain’s Reclaiming Childhood, and use some of Keri Smith’s excellent ideas from How to be an Explorer of the World.
I’m pretty excited! It’s been five months since the last challenge, and this time it’s spring. Our daughter has grown and the nature is looking so different in April – it’s new adventures altogether!
I hope you join us in the challenge! Officially by registrating online and joining the community – it’s completely free – or unofficially by just sticking your nose out for 30 minutes per day.
I’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences on rewilding, wherever you are!