In this new digital world we are living in, we often lose touch with nature and our sense of surroundings. Much of our environment is covered by beautiful landscapes and picturesque scenery that is their top admired. The stress of working life takes our minds off connecting with nature, but being in nature should be a priority at least for one day of the week. For both mental clarity and physical health, being out in nature has been scientifically proven to improve our overall well-being and offer an improved perception of the quality of life. Studies have shown that 120 minutes a week in nature is associated with overall better well-being, so if the statistics are showing this, why aren’t more people getting out into nature?
If you need more convincing to get out into nature and take in the enchanting feeling it can provide, take a look at the following 10 amazing benefits of being in nature:
Mood increases and regulates
Nature is known for being a great mood booster and emotion regulator. Viewing beautiful scenery can reflect on how your mood feels and also how you view your current situation in life. Staying in a mundane office is certain to lead to negative feelings and a closed mindset. Spending most of your time inside is not healthy for your mind and body, so get out there and see what nature has to offer. If you are looking for an endorphin boost, nature is known to improve your mood, and help you feel more energized and also optimistic.
Have you ever felt overwhelmed and stressed, then felt an immediate need to get outside and feel the fresh air? Oxygen flow is essential during times of stress, and stepping outdoors into the open space is proven to release this tension. Whilst lowering your heart rate, you should expect to see your mood regulate much faster than if you were to stay cooped up inside. Nature is so effective at reducing stress, that many medical professionals will recommend that patients spend more time in nature to alleviate stress before they consider any form of medical prescription.
Supports the sleep / wake cycle
Being out in nature allows for natural light to enter your eyes, and this is essential for regulating your sleep-wake cycle. Our sleep-wake cycle, which is connected to our circadian rhythm, is heavily influenced by the presence of natural light. Being outside in nature is proven to improve sleep cycles and encourage a better night’s sleep after you have been exposed to the sunrise and sundown. Therefore, if you have been struggling with insomnia, spend some time in nature before bed, make sure you see the sun slowly going down, and avoid bright lights for the rest of the evening to induce the sleepy feeling we need to fall asleep quickly.
Supports relationship building
When you are out in nature, it allows you to take a step back from the bustling environment that you might be used to in everyday life. Taking time to go out in nature with a friend is a great excuse to build your relationship, and spend time being present together. It is so easy to get distracted by our phones today, so consider going for a walk with no phones, and be entertained by the company and conversation of each other.
Improves vitamin D
Vitamin D is an essential mineral that we all need in our bodies which can result in problems such as fatigue, dizziness, shortness of breath, and even more disturbing symptoms. Getting vitamin D is best done through daily exposure to sunlight. Whilst we should all be conscious of the UV raze that can have damaging effects without the right sun protection, we should be spending time in nature to get the valuable doses of vitamin D we need. When you spend time in nature, make sure you wear enough SPF to protect you from the sun but still allow yourself to get enough exposed sunlight! You should also consider investing in natural skin care products to soothe any skin damage that could be caused by the sun.
Provides space for reflection
Being out in nature is a great time to reflect on your current situation and clear your mind. There are so many things happening all at once in our lives. Not giving time to reflect and process what has happened can be detrimental to our mental health, therefore enough time should be spent in nature daily. Use your time in nature to get everything off your chest. It is a place where no judgment is present or opinions. If you find it difficult to think for yourself, take a journey to write everything down whilst you sit on the soft grass and write all of your feelings down.
How to spend more time in nature
If you are finding it difficult to get out of your normal routine and make time to be in nature, take a look at the following excuses for getting out and enjoying nature:
Riding bikes/ scooters
Being in nature is more than going for a walk in your local park. Engaging in activities such as riding a bike or a fast electric scooter through a range of terrains is a fun way to make memories whilst getting the much-needed dose of nature you need. Find a suitable bike or scooter riding path near you. You will find yourself wanting to spend more time in nature after each ride you take!
Consider getting a dog
Yes, we understand that dogs are a huge lifelong commitment, but if you are in the right place in your life to get a pet let it be a dog! Walking your dog is the best excuse to be out in nature daily, ingesting the fresh air and enjoying the green rolling hills. Dogs need at least two walks a day. Having a requirement to be in nature that exceeds your desires will make you get the necessary fresh air you need, even when you don’t feel like it. You will thank yourself after each walk, and also get to have a lifelong best friend join you.
Take up gardening
Gardening is such a soothing activity which allows you to inject your sense of creativity into your garden space. Gardening can be a full-time job, but with the correct route and materials, it could become your new best excuse to spend time outdoors nurturing what you have grown.
Overall, we should all be spending time in nature. No matter what your responsibilities are, if you find yourself coming up with excuses to avoid being benign, now is the time to make a change. Spend at least 30 minutes in nature every day and see the life-changing benefits it brings. Whether it’s a walk in the park or a scooter ride down the canal, get out there and explore the beauty of nature.