Top tips on connecting with nature to improve your mental health.
There’s a lot of good research to support the role nature can play in protecting and supporting our mental health.
The good news is, there are lots of simple ways to bring nature into your everyday.
1. Find nature wherever you are.
Nature can be a garden, a local park, a nearby beach or open countryside.
Even in cities where nature can be harder to find, there’s things community gardens or courtyards to discover and explore. Try to notice nature wherever you are, in whatever way is meaningful for you.
2. Take time and reflect.
Taking some quiet time to reflect in natural surroundings using all your senses can be a real boost to your mental health. Whether you’re relaxing in the garden or on your way to work, try listening out for birdsong, look for bees and butterflies, or notice the movement of the clouds. All of these good things in nature can help you to find a sense of calm and joy.
3. Get out into nature.
If you can, try to spend time visiting natural places – green spaces like parks, gardens or forests – or blue spaces like the beach, rivers and wetlands. This can help you reduce your risk of mental health problems, lift your mood and help you feel better about things. If it feels daunting to get outside, try going with a friend or relative, or picking somewhere familiar.
4. Bring nature to you.
Sometimes it’s hard to access natural places because of where you live, how busy you are, how safe you feel or your health. Why not try bringing nature into your home? Having plants in the house is a great way to have something natural to see, touch and smell – pots of herbs from the supermarket are a good start.
Check out the Mental Health Foundation Website for more top tips.