Connection: Biophilia In All Its Forms

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The Routeburn: Towards Harris Saddle

This weekend, I ran away. I’ve been burning the candle at all sorts of ends – it’s basically just a puddle of wax on the floor. I’m consistently over-ambitious, over-extended, and aching all over. But I’m more energised than I’ve been in a really long time.

I’m not ashamed to say the last six months have been tough. At times a bit of a warzone I’ve had to battle through, struggling to keep my head up. But if they’ve been a battle, this last month’s been a revolution.

Being broken up with out the blue is a lot like being dropped from a team for no reason. You’ve lost a connection. But the main thing to keep in mind is this: However much a better person someone else makes you, it’s possible to lose them and still become an even better one. Another thing to remember: Just because you’re now flying solo, it doesn’t mean you have to do it alone.

In the last couple of months I’ve got back on board with the Queenstown Creative Writing Group, taken photos with the Snappers, joined the triumphant TEDx Queenstown team (the videos are up!), jumped on wheels to spin around with the Roller Derby squad, and hit the ice to become a part of Queenstown’s first and currently only women’s ice hockey team. I’ve also spent time with friends who have cemented into a crew to wind up and down the days with – making a living, of course, taking up the multitude of hours in between.

I’ve been out the loop a little with #1000Speak and the gang, but I’ve been keeping up with posts and marvelling at the continued energy that has turned into monthly efforts to foster a world-wide community dedicated to compassion. The theme this month was connection, so I’d like to add my belated mite.

Being part of a team, whether sports squad, arts gathering or friendship group, is about connection. Connection is what makes us human; it’s what keeps us compassionate, empathetic, enthusiastic – it allows us to come together with a common purpose and achieve common goals as well as individual ones. Being part of team, being connected to anything – it motivates us, lifts us, cheers us. Completes us.

Sometimes, like this weekend for me, you want to get away from the maelstrom and wander about in the quiet. I went with a friend, but it could be you’d rather spend some time alone. Whichever way, there’s still connection there. Wherever you are, even in silence, you can find connection with your surroundings.

Biophilia translates as ‘love of life’. It was coined by Erich Fromm to describe an innate psychological attraction to what is alive and vital – to nature. It’s something I certainly experienced this weekend as I walked the Routeburn, one of New Zealand’s Great Walks, to show-stopping views such as those captured above and below.

Whatever you’ve been through and wherever you’re going, make sure you pause to consider the connections you’re making along the way. Make sure to embrace them. Make sure to love life.

Where have you been lately? What have you been doing and with whom? Do you ever pause to contemplate how we’re all connected?

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The Routeburn: Coming up the highest part of the track

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The Routeburn: Also known as Middle Earth

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Glenorchy Lagoon: A warm-down walk at sunset

9 thoughts on “Connection: Biophilia In All Its Forms

  1. Deborah Makarios

    Ice hockey? No wonder you ache all over! The Routeburn looks marvellous – part of me thinks I’d love to do something like that, and the sensible bit of me knows I’m so unfit they’d probably need to chopper me out by lunchtime…

    Reply
    1. Sara Litchfield Post author

      Haha yes, I’m definitely aching! It gets harder and harder to get up every day… The Routeburn’s not too hard a track! It’s amazingly accessible… And I’d never say no to a chopper ride!

      Reply
  2. saraletourneau

    “Wherever you are, even in silence, you can find connection with your surroundings.”

    Yes yes yes! I completely agree with this, having done it myself a couple weeks ago. I went to the Heritage Museum and Gardens in Sandwich, MA, and walked their nature trails, took pictures, and savored the fresh air and blooming flowers for 3 hours. And I was utterly happy, and exhausted when I got home. Connecting with one’s surroundings, especially nature, can be an incredible thing.

    Sounds like you’ve been super-busy, my friend, but for awesome reasons. Keep on smiling! 🙂 And those photos of the lagoon and Routeburn are gorgeous.

    Reply
    1. Sara Litchfield Post author

      Ah that sounds wonderful… Definitely exactly what I’m talking about! I was just looking about in wonder the whole time – tired but so happy to be out there 🙂 Glad you get the feeling! I’m glad to be so busy, just need to add working on the WIP back into the mix now and I’ll be getting somewhere!

      Reply
  3. Kelly Roberts

    I haven’t been anywhere near as beautiful as those photos (holy hell, they’re gorgeous), but I did spend a great 90 minutes outside over the weekend playing pickleball with my husband. I’ve never been much of an outdoor person, especially when it’s hot, but I was so into the game and how marvelous my body felt moving like that that I didn’t even notice that it had started raining (normally something that would send me back indoors). I could have kept going for at least another hour or two. I’ll definitely being doing that again!

    Reply
    1. Sara Litchfield Post author

      Pickleball?! I had to Google it – sounds brilliant! It’s wonderful getting so into something that things like the weather and the rest of the world fade away 🙂

      Reply
  4. Dani

    These images are just beautiful, Sara.

    I’m glad you’ve been communing with nature, thus communing with self.

    And ice hockey?? AWE-some!!!

    With blessings,
    Dani

    Reply
    1. Sara Litchfield Post author

      Thanks Dani 🙂 It’s just brilliant. The world is so beautiful and there are so many things to do in it that make you feel alive!

      Reply

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