Have you lost touch with nature? In today’s hectic, heavily manmade world, it can be easy to lose sight of the great outdoors and everything that inhabits it. But there are real benefits to bringing nature into your everyday life, from improved mood to reduced stress, better physical health and greater feelings of connection.
Part of the problem can be knowing where to start. You might feel cut off from nature in your current surroundings or too short on time. But there are lots of low-pressure ways to build a better relationship with nature and lead a healthier lifestyle, starting with those we’ve covered below!
It might sound overly simple, but paying attention to your surroundings is important for noticing nature – especially if you don’t live in or around green space.
Can you listen for bird songs or trees swaying on your walk to work? Perhaps there are community gardens to enjoy on a lunchtime or evening stroll. Even noticing the sky, weather and change of seasons can help to ground you in nature.
Bring nature inside
Alternatively, if you struggle to connect with nature outside, why not bring it into your home? From curating and caring for houseplants to growing herbs or flowers, lots of plants can thrive indoors.
If you do have an outdoor space, adding a birdfeeder will entice more visitors. If not, simply watching nature TV programmes and films like Planet Earth could help inspire you.
Eat and drink natural foods
Eating certain processed foods can lead to overconsumption of fat, salt and sugar. Targeting more healthy, organic foods on the other hand will improve your physical health as well as building an appreciation for where food comes from.
You could take things further by foraging or planting fruit and vegetables in your garden. Trying drinks like camomile tea meanwhile could improve sleep, digestion and a range of other common complaints.
Connect with animals
Connecting with animals is one of life’s great pleasures. Do you spend enough quality time with your pet, for example? Or if you don’t have one, and you understand the commitment, could getting a pet improve your quality of life?
Other less-involved options include bird watching or visiting farms. Similarly, if you have children, watching them discover animals will boost your wellbeing too!
Whether walking, running, cycling or something else, there are lots of great benefits to exercising outdoors.
- It’s a wonderful way to destress, particularly if you work indoors
- You’ll get exposure to sunlight, helping your body clock when it comes to sleep (even if it’s cloudy!)
- You can explore your local area more
- It’s cheaper than a gym membership!
Leaving your headphones at home will help you take in more natural sounds. If you already get out regularly, how about trying new routes that incorporate nature?
Could one or more of these methods help you get back in touch with nature?