Caring for each other and the world around us serves as a survival instinct, necessary for self preservation.
The nature principle claims that a reconnection to the natural world is not only essential to our survival but also to our health, well-being, and spirit. Being in nature, or even viewing scenes of nature, reduces anger, fear, anxiety, depression and stress. Exposure to the outdoors helps us absorb Vitamin D and get more exercise. Mood enhances, relaxation increases as does our overall wellbeing. Health improvements include reduced blood pressure and heart rate, decreased inflammation, enhanced short term memory, lower muscle tension, and improved sleep. Additionally, studies show that being in nature makes us happier, giving us a more positive outlook and greater satisfaction with life.
Sadly, many of us experience a nature deficit. While being in nature is an innate desire, and even drive, the habits we have created are tipping the scale toward diminished exposure and destruction over immersion and conservation. Instead of reaping the benefits, we experience the devastating consequences: Vitamin D deficiency, difficulty concentrating, decreased ability to cope with stress and increased depression, obesity, diabetes, anxiety and chronic pain among others.
The good news is that we can reconnect to nature and quickly experience its many benefits. Begin with identifying where you can experience nature – is it in your backyard, a nearby park, a weekend beach trip, a mountain hike? Not surrounded by opportunities? Bring nature home – start a garden, buy some plants, hang a bird feeder. Don’t have a green thumb? Get a nature poster or painting, open your windows to see the sky, gather stones, rocks, or shells and display them around your home. Once you have a where, pick a when. Planning your nature exposure is a great way to ensure it happens, especially in the initial stages.
This week, plan to have lunch outdoors, take a walking coffee break, chat on the phone in your garden, open your windows and let the sun shine in or marvel at the rain or snow. With WeHeal supporting you, the possibilities are endless, so find the ones that resonate most with you and enjoy!