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Issue 42: March 2021
Natural Happiness Seed 1:
Nourish your Roots


Feature Blog: how to nourish your roots - the Gardener's Way
New short video series: beautiful garden wisdom for your daily nourishment
Lockdown resilience: ten top tips
Become a Natural Happiness Advocate
Nourish your roots video: the Tree Test
Bonus Blog 1: Covid vaccinations including how to avoid side effects
Bonus Blog 2: Earth Report from Vogon Jelfs - a Hitchhiker's Guide tribute
Dear friends,

This season of Spring growth feels much needed in the human and natural worlds. The newsletter offers various resources to feed your roots and help you to flourish. And Issue 42 includes something for Douglas Adams fans still questing the Ultimate Answer!

With best wishes,

Feature Blog: How to nourish your roots - the Gardener's Way

This is the first in a series of blogs presenting the Seven Seeds of Natural Happiness, a unique way to help people grow their own happiness using parallels with gardening and organic farming, created by Alan Heeks. For an overview of all seven seeds, click here.

In these times of rising uncertainty, we need new ways to stay happy and clear. Natural Happiness has evolved from over 20 years’ immersion in organic gardening and farming: it draws on both techniques, such as composting and crop rotation, and the skills a gardener evolves, like observation and patience.

People sometimes compare themselves to a complex mechanism, like a car or computer, but that’s too simplistic. We are living organisms, like a garden. I’ve found that cultivated natural ecosystems, such as a garden or organic farm, are the best guide to growing our own happiness: showing us how to steer an organism to a positive outcome using natural growth methods. I call this approach the Gardener’s Way.

Lockdown resilience: ten top tips

Despite my resilience skills, I’ve had to keep digging deep to sustain my mood, especially in these recent winter months. Whilst there’s hope for easing restrictions soon, lockdown has a cumulative grinding effect. So here are my tips for the next few months.
Read more

Join our team as a Natural Happiness Advocate

Alan is seeking up to six people to work with him as Advocates, sharing the Natural Happiness approach by selling and running short workshops, online and in person: you will need some expertise in gardening and wellbeing, but training and support will be provided. 

For full details, including how to apply, click here.

Nourish your roots video: the tree test

In this 4-minute video, Alan guides you through a simple process to see if your roots and fruits are in balance: click here.

New short video series: Beautiful garden wisdom for your daily nourishment

We are starting an ongoing Natural Happiness project of 30 short films using the garden to inspire people to support their own sense of wellbeing. Called Beautiful Garden Wisdom For Your Daily Nourishment, we will be promoting them on social media - so if you see them, please feel free to share to spread that sense of communal support. For now, you can see the first one – Light and Shade – on our YouTube playlist.

To follow us on Twitter, click here.

Events on offer

July 9-11
At Hazel Hill Wood or online

Natural Happiness: cultivate your resilience with the Gardeners Way

How can you stay happy when there’s too much change and uncertainty? This workshop shows you how: to cultivate yourself like a garden, and grow your own wellbeing by learning from natural ecosystems, using Alan’s unique Natural Happiness model.

Our methods will include: nourishing our roots; composting problems; using co-creative skills to work with nature; growing inspiration; and ecosystem insights about community. Along with workshop sessions, there will be solo times in the wood, plus good food, campfires and songs to nourish us. This will be a residential group at Hazel Hill Wood: if Covid restrictions prevent this, it will be run with a series of online sessions with personal time in between.

For more info and bookings, click here.

Grow your own Happiness
Cultivate your wellbeing with gardening skills!
Online workshop available for group bookings
In these stormy times, we need new skills to stay happy.  A cultivated ecosystem, like a garden, is a role model for human nature: this workshop shows how gardening methods can help you grow your own happiness. Participants will have a chance to try out the Seven Seeds of Happiness, a model devised by Alan Heeks. Group bookings from gardening, environmental and other groups welcome.
Click here to learn more. 

Bonus Blog 1: Covid vaccinations including how to avoid side effects

Image: Covid Vaccination Centre

Having my first covid vaccination was a moving experience, which I hadn’t expected. I’m so proud of the NHS for organising on this scale and speed, and touched by all the volunteers who made it possible.

As I cycled to our local surgery on a freezing Saturday morning, there was a steady flow of pedestrians of similar age, heading that way. It reminded me of the bit in the Christmas Story where “all went to be taxed, every one into his own city”. Impressive to realise this scene is being repeated all across Britain.

Joining a queue of sixty people, all round the car park and beyond, I feared this would take all morning, but the line kept moving, and I was off home in fifteen minutes. The whole organisation was impeccable, and done caringly.

Read more

Bonus Blog 2: Earth Report from Vogon Jelfs - a Hitchhiker's Guide tribute

To: Controller, Zone 581, LIP Group. (Less Interesting Planets)

Your Greatship,

I grovel before you as I make this report. This is the scheduled 50-year update on my visit to Earth in 1971.

Your Greatship will recall that in 1971, the outlook here was promising. Many people were thinking about quality of life, there were global initiatives for sustainability, and the superpowers were discussing peace and disarmament.

At that time we began our experiment with Technological Dominance, to discover if humans could withstand the manipulative, addictive power of Vogon technologies: the internet, social media, mega-materialism, personality cults. Our decision to channel our interventions through a few crazed politicians and self-obsessed entrepreneurs has proved very effective.

Read more


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