Turning Off Autopilot With An Excursion Out Of The City

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It’s no secret among people closest to me that I have to take regular breaks from the city to keep my sanity. I had one of these breaks this past weekend with the in-laws visiting. We spent a few hours in the Chicago Botanic Gardens strolling through climate themed greenhouses, blooming rose gardens and many paths through sculpted gardens.

These trips to the gardens with their wide open spaces and big skies unobstructed by skyscrapers give me back some of my sanity and let me breathe. My mind clears and I start to focus on what’s around me in the colors, shapes and patterns of all the flowers, trees and plants.

A break from my daily environment is very much like flipping a physical switch for me. I become more focused, more curious, and more engaged in my surroundings. I think city life goes on autopilot for me too often.

Do you reach a point where you realize you need a change from the everyday to break the automatic pilot you are on? What do you do to get back in focus?

I was focused on all the textures in the garden during this visit. It's something different every time.