Why Reconnecting With Nature Is Worth It
Start writing a post
Health and Wellness

Why Reconnecting With Nature Is Worth It

Reconnecting with nature, no matter how challenging it seems in the crush of daily life, is vital to your health and wellbeing.

Why Reconnecting With Nature Is Worth It

Like many of my peers, I was raised in "pristine" suburbia with all of the manicured lawns but none of the vast expanses of nature that you can only truly experience in rural locales. I was always somewhat comfortable in nature, but it took time for me to feel fully at peace and open to the benefits of simply being outdoors, off the grid, by myself.

Nowadays nature is a vital part of who I am, how I live, and what I impart to my wellness coaching clients. For many of us, making time to reconnect with nature can be a challenge. Our lives are so hectic and scheduled — and dependent on technology — it may seem impossible to walk away.

But it is possible, and necessary.

Today, people increasingly live in urban centers and spend more and more time on screens. Continuing COVID-19 related restrictions have only exacerbated this already problematic trend, for both working adults and for TikTok-addicted kids.

But as the stresses of everyday modern life build up, and especially in this topsy turvy time of a global pandemic, economic uncertainty, and civil unrest, carving out time to just turn everything off and breathe fresh air is absolutely vital.

Here are four reasons why.

1. Gain a sense that you're part of something big

In one study from the American Psychological Association journal, researchers found that participants who watched the documentary Planet Earth were 46% more likely to feel awe and 31% more likely to feel grateful than those who watched neutral or comedy programming.

If just watching nature on a screen can inspire powerful, positive reactions, how much more so experiencing nature in reality? In my experience, getting outside can dramatically improve both psychological and physical wellbeing by giving people some much-needed perspective.

When I was younger, I didn't fully appreciate how immense and complex the natural world around me was. By venturing into nature, however; I gained a broader perspective, and with it the ability to overcome challenges and appreciate what I have.

2. Enjoy increased happiness

Stress is a risk factor for a host of illnesses, including heart disease. In particular, work-related stress can have a negative impact on an individual's mental health, but there is one easy antidote — sunlight.

Just getting outside into the sunlight and breathing fresh air can release serotonin, the "happiness hormone," and bring relief from everyday stressors. Plus, if you move your body in nature you'll get the added benefit of an endorphin boost.

For some people, getting out of urban centers and into an expanse of nature isn't accessible, but one study in the UKfound that even a little green space – for example, a community garden or park – had a positive impact on mood.

Even if you're staying close to home, get out into the fresh air and find serenity. Use these moments to face your undistracted self and make peace with what you have and where you are in life.

3. Improve your brain function

In addition to the psychological and health benefits, reconnecting with nature can also help your brain perform better. I know that this works for me: often when I have important tasks to get done, I can feel overwhelmed, unfocused, or uninspired. But after spending some time in nature, I feel recharged and ready to tackle any project.

Staying glued to your screens and neglecting your human need to connect with nature can crush creativity and even affect how your brain performs over time. This is backed by research, including studies linking time spent on screens with lower academic performance among students.

As both kids and adults spend most of their days indoors and on screens, a growing number of experts are ringing the alarm about "nature withdrawal". Regular connection to nature can improve concentration, learning, cooperation, self-awareness and even foster better memory performance.

4. Save the world

Yes, you read that correctly. I'm not saying you'll turn into a radioactive superhero with bionic vision, but by connecting to nature, you will learn to appreciate it, respect it, and may even take a more active role in saving it.

After spending time outdoors, my clients often report back to me about aspects of the natural world that they've observed and gained new appreciation for. This awareness, moreover, fosters a sense of responsibility for preserving nature in all of its wonder, and that's where saving the world comes in.

Aside from being kind to the world, reconnecting with nature also makes us kinder to one another. Just being in nature enhances a range of positive prosocial feelings and behaviors, including agreeableness, empathy, generosity, trust, and willingness to help others. Basically, being outside makes us better people.

Time to recharge and reconnect

Nature has been an integral part of my journey, and it's one of the foundations of my coaching practice, as any of my clients will tell you. So if you're feeling disconnected, unmotivated, or down, think about the kind of landscape that brings you joy, and then go outside and find it.

Reconnecting with nature, no matter how challenging it seems in the crush of daily life, is vital to your health and wellbeing. So take the time you need to be alone and to just be outdoors, under the healing sunlight and among green living things — your body, mind and soul will thank you.

This article was originally published on VocalMedia.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Student Life

Top 10 Reasons My School Rocks!

Why I Chose a Small School Over a Big University.

man in black long sleeve shirt and black pants walking on white concrete pathway

I was asked so many times why I wanted to go to a small school when a big university is so much better. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure a big university is great but I absolutely love going to a small school. I know that I miss out on big sporting events and having people actually know where it is. I can't even count how many times I've been asked where it is and I know they won't know so I just say "somewhere in the middle of Wisconsin." But, I get to know most people at my school and I know my professors very well. Not to mention, being able to walk to the other side of campus in 5 minutes at a casual walking pace. I am so happy I made the decision to go to school where I did. I love my school and these are just a few reasons why.

Keep Reading...Show less
Lots of people sat on the cinema wearing 3D glasses

Ever wonder what your friend meant when they started babbling about you taking their stapler? Or how whenever you ask your friend for a favor they respond with "As You Wish?" Are you looking for new and creative ways to insult your friends?

Well, look no further. Here is a list of 70 of the most quotable movies of all time. Here you will find answers to your questions along with a multitude of other things such as; new insults for your friends, interesting characters, fantastic story lines, and of course quotes to log into your mind for future use.

Keep Reading...Show less
New Year Resolutions

It's 2024! You drank champagne, you wore funny glasses, and you watched the ball drop as you sang the night away with your best friends and family. What comes next you may ask? Sadly you will have to return to the real world full of work and school and paying bills. "Ah! But I have my New Year's Resolutions!"- you may say. But most of them are 100% complete cliches that you won't hold on to. Here is a list of those things you hear all around the world.

Keep Reading...Show less

The Ultimate Birthday: Unveiling the Perfect Day to Celebrate!

Let's be real, the day your birthday falls on could really make or break it.

​different color birthday candles on a cake
Blacksburg Children's Museum

You heard it here first: birthdays in college are some of the best days of your four years. For one day annually, you get to forget about your identity as a stressed, broke, and overworked student, and take the time to celebrate. You can throw your responsibilities for a day, use your one skip in that class you hate, receive kind cards and gifts from loved ones and just enjoy yourself.

Keep Reading...Show less

Unleash Inspiration: 15 Relatable Disney Lyrics!

Leave it to Disney to write lyrics that kids of all ages can relate to.

The 15 most inspiring Disney songs

Disney songs are some of the most relatable and inspiring songs not only because of the lovable characters who sing them, but also because of their well-written song lyrics. While some lyrics make more sense with knowledge of the movie's story line that they were written for, other Disney lyrics are very relatable and inspiring for any listener.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments