A visiting niece recently shared a video she’d taken of an octopus, blasting around in the clear shallows of the Ningaloo Coast World Heritage Area, which instantly catapulted me back me to the captivating and heartwarming academy award winning Netflix documentary, My Octopus Teacher, by South African naturalist, and documentary filmmaker, Craig Foster.

2 days later, I’m serendipitously listening to a podcast with Tim Ferriss and Foster himself, in which the filmmaker describes how the success of the film and the ensuing fame and limelight, wreaked havoc with his psyche, resulting in his mental health taking a serious nosedive for months to come.

Of interest to hear was how, on his slow journey to recovery, Foster spent a month on a research station on an extremely remote island, off East Africa, in a near pristine environment; mind-bending in terms of biodiversity.

It was in this period that his psyche went YES.

To this acclaimed octopus student, being immersed in this environment served as a magical elixir, a re-boot if you will, rendering him calm, present and at home, a feeling that he reported lasting for many months.

Foster suggests that the amount of nature we have around us deeply affects the psyche in a profound way. The more, the merrier, if you will and the greater the variety, the greater the effect.

At this point in the interview, I was mentally humming the famous Beatles tune, thinking octopus gardens in the shade, teeming with life and biodiversity…but really, I was joining the dots to our own internal gut gardens, our microbiomes and the gut-brain axis…inextricably linked to our state of wellbeing.

Consider this…

What if we were to aim for world class heritage listing in this domain?

What would it take to work towards creating a mind-bendingly biodiverse microbiome with 1,000s of species, flourishing in a nutrient rich intestinal environment, working in our favour?

What would it take to say YES to this, and to experience enhanced mental wellbeing as a result?

What might we have to give up?

What might we have to take up?

And how might not saying YES to this be serving us in some unconscious way?

Just some food for thought as we contemplate the link between nourishing and flourishing.

Till next month…onwards, upwards…and kudos to our eight-legged friends!

PS – If you know of anyone who might enjoy reading my newsletters, feel free to forward this to them and ask them to subscribe.

PPS – If you’re ready, work with me directly to see how you can benefit from some wellbeing coaching. Hit the reply button to this email with “yes, more information please”. 

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