Lessons from Nature: Finding Strength Through Struggle
Nina Herndon
September 25, 2020
September 8, 2023
Be Inspired

It’s easy to forget how connected to nature our bodies are, how healing nature truly is. Do you notice a shift of energy in your body, mind or spirit when the seasons change? Fall gives us the opportunity to shed what we’ve outgrown. Winter reminds us to withdraw and go inward. Spring allows us to experience renewal and rebirth. And summer, especially in Texas, reminds us to rest.

Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of the earth. ~Henry David Thoreau

A Lesson I’ve Learned From Nature

Several years ago, I experienced a great deal of fear, confusion, discontentment, and restlessness. Unwilling to face the truth, I distracted myself by planning what I thought was to be the greatest adventure of my life: farming. 

A month or so out from my departure a dear friend told me I wouldn’t find what I was looking for in Virginia. “I’m not saying it’s the wrong decision—I don’t know that. I just know that what you’re looking for is already within you.”

It was the very opposite of what I wanted to hear, but it was exactly what I needed. I was losing my job. I was miserable in my relationship. I was lost, and I was afraid. This new exciting adventure was my escape! 

One week before leaving, I called the trip off. Luckily, I didn’t have to drive across the country to spend my days waking up before dawn and farming in the freezing cold. Instead, I experienced something that felt much more difficult: a dying of self.

As the trees weathered the fall, so did I. Holding on became so difficult that the only choice I had was to let go. With my friend’s advice playing on repeat in my head, I made a decision to face and embrace what was actually making me afraid, what I was running from. I stopped trying to understand why so many lovely things in my life had withered and died—a simple reality of nature. I stopped forcing and fighting. I stopped asking for things to just go my way. 

It was painful in so many ways. I cried. I screamed. I didn’t see the point or understand why everything had to be so difficult all at once. But looking back I am able to see that the leaves which had kept my branches feeling safe, protected, and beautiful had served their purpose. I didn’t, and couldn’t, hold onto them. That standing alone, I was strong and safe—I had roots.

When spring came, and the trees began to grow new leaves, I felt excited to be experiencing the rebirth and renewal after my journey of going within. I started journaling again and began a walking meditation practice. By letting go, I experienced discomfort, but it was followed by a much greater sense of trust, clarity, relie, and purpose.

Seasons Remind Us We Are Cyclical

Ayurveda, the sister science to yoga, teaches us how to live in harmony with nature through a practice of balance. It is a Sanskrit word that translates to “the wisdom of life” and it’s something you can learn more about at Detox & Yoga Retreats. A new season is a great time to pause, reflect and reassess.


  • After being forced to slow down, consider is the busyness of your life—is it necessary or is it avoidance?
  • What have you discovered about yourself this season?
  • What have you discovered about what's important in life?
  • Are you still holding onto a hardship or struggle?


  • Take space to breathe, reflect, and find clarity.
  • Take time for yourself - away from your distractions and commitments.
  • Go for a walk around your neighborhood or a local park, find a quiet place for meditation, enjoy a cup of coffee in your own backyard, or go for a bike ride.


  • Sit in self reflection or journal.
  • What do you commit your time and energy to?
  • Do you enjoy what you’re doing?
  • Are you taking time to relax and enjoy life?
  • Is there something in your life that doesn’t feel quite right - are you forcing it?


  • Make changes based on the following:
  • What’s important to you?
  • Are you making time for that?
  • What isn’t serving you?
  • How can you let go of it?

Remember the journey of letting go and growing is a constant one. Let go of the urge to have everything just right, or even right now. Step into the season of change without expectation and your heart open to possibility. If you need a weekend to get away to reflect and find clarity, we’d love to have you at an upcoming retreat.

This blog is intended to provide helpful suggestions for self care and overall well-being. I am not a mental health professional. If you’re struggling I encourage you to seek the help of a professional. Find a Mental Health Professional | National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline: Dial 988

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Nina Herndon

Nina believes women have an incredible ability to help one another, and is driven to cultivate safe spaces for them to do so. Over the years she has helped her mom to grow Retreat in the Pines to reach as many women as possible.

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