What You Need And Don’t Know You Do

War was about to erupt.  

In this amazing scene from the movie Gladiator, Maximus (the great general) is about to lead his army into battle. He kneels down, grabs a handful of dirt, mindfully rubs it in his hands, paused, and smells earth. Why?  

At first brush you may say, “The guy is getting ready to go to war and he is playing in the dirt.” That makes no sense–right?  Wrong!   

So why did he do this? 

He did one of the most important things you can do in uncertainty–get grounded and centered within. He understood that when everything is out of control, there is always one thing you can control–yourself. When we are not grounded during uncertainty we are like an untethered kite blown and trashed by the winds of uncertainty.

There are many ways to get grounded. One of the quickest and most powerful ways is to get outside. Yep, get outside! There is power in being out in nature. Our souls crave it. It has been said that 93% of our lives are spent indoors.  Yuck!  As a psychotherapist and leadership coach I prescribe that every client get outside at least 15-30 minutes a day. 

Steven Covey said, “Allow nature to bequeath its strength to you.”   In order for that to happen, you need to get outside regardless of the weather. Even if it’s for a few minutes, pause and allow mother earth to help you re-calibrate life, get you centered, be present, be mindful, or just  be!  Research shows that doing so will help you get grounded.   


  1. Set an intention to get outside daily even for a couple minutes, ideally for 15-30 minutes;
  2. Connect with and experience the beauty of nature, be mindful, use as many senses as you can.  Notice what you hear, see, feel, smell or taste; and  
  3. Just be, try not to think about anything. Simply notice and breathe. 

I promise you will feel a little better!  

Stay safe and healthy,

Doug Nielsen

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