I remember when I used to work at a plant nursery people would say they were jealous that I had such relaxing job where I got to be outside. They were half right…I did get to be outside more! Before that, when I lived in London, I found running helped to not just to feel better physically but gave me the opportunity to be outside and enjoy the seasons as I ran through the city parks. Here in Nairobi I’m lucky enough to have a garden but places like City Park and Karura Forest are still great for a stroll or a dog walk and to enjoy the sheer amount of biodiversity this country has been gifted with. I also love that there are so many gyms in Nairobi that allow you to workout and enjoy being in nature. Dojo in Karen is my absolute favourite for this! The doors hinge open to allow you to take a yoga class as if outside, or you can brave the parkour classes on the specially built outdoor course.
Being in nature is good for our health, both physically and mentally. But most of us these days live in city apartments. Houseplants can be one of the easiest way to surround yourself with a bit of a nature and give you the benefits of the great outdoors even if you don’t have that much time or space on your hands. The other great thing about indoor plants is that keeping them alive is, you know, part of the gig. Interacting with plants, having something to care for, and watching as it goes through life stages can be a huge thrill! It sounds silly but I still see a new leaf on a plant and it lifts my day. I did that! I’ve helped that plant to thrive. The current trend is definitely leaning towards the more maximalist approach to plants, but if you don’t have the time or the money, just one or two plants dotted around the house still help to lift a space and make it feel more alive. They will also put you in a better mood – in fact there is even research to suggest that people who keep houseplants are actually more compassionate and empathetic towards others!