Are you suffering from Anxiety, Stress or Low Mood?
Many would acknowledge feeling better, perhaps refreshed, lighter or more relaxed, after a day in nature. However, not many of us would consciously prioritise spending time in nature to improve mental health.
Scientists working in the field of eco-therapy have been studying the effects of nature on wellbeing. Indeed, being in nature and natural settings has many healing and psychological benefits. Studies show that walking in nature could lead to a lower risk of depression.
People who walked for 90 minutes in a natural area showed reduced brain activity in an area associated with a key factor in depression (rumination) compared with those who walked in a high-traffic environment. Rumination is the experience of having repeated thoughts that are negatively biased, which commonly occurs in depression.
Beyond Blue researched the benefits of nature on mental health and found that “the effects of living in a green environment cannot be underestimated”.
Some of the benefits discovered in their research were:
Get Outside – Psychologist Recommendations to Reduce Stress & Boost Your Mood
Spending time in nature could be a useful adjunct to counselling as a way to treat mental health issues, boost wellbeing and prevent relapse. To maximise the benefits of being in nature, why not do this mindfully? Here there are some simple ways to connect with nature for you: