Over the last year, we have all been confined to our homes, with many of us struggling to cope with our mental health. Evidence shows that going for walks outside was one of the top coping strategies and 45% of people reported that being in green spaces has been vital for their mental health throughout the pandemic.
However, many of us may face barriers that might stop us connecting with nature. For example, you may be limited by your environment and access to outdoor space. Or you may be unused to spending time in green space and find it uncomfortable or unfamiliar. Our partners at Togetherall have created some tips and suggestions for you to consider:
Start small – Try spending just five minutes a day for the next week paying attention to nature in your everyday life. Just taking a brief moment to notice and celebrate nature can help you to be more present in your daily life – and you might be surprised by what you notice!
Do things you find relaxing – You might like to go for a walk, read or paint in natural surroundings. Remember, that being outdoors doesn’t always have to be exercising, sometimes just being is enough.
Ask for support – If you feel anxious in new places or social situations, you could ask someone you trust to go with you at first or you could even connect with others & share how you’re feeling on Togetherall. Did you know that you have FREE access to Togetherall mental health support? Togetherall is a safe, anonymous online community. You can get support, or you can support others. Sign up here today.
Bring nature indoors – If finding vast outside space isn’t geographically possible, or maybe it feels overwhelming at the moment, you could explore ways of bringing nature indoors. A small and simple way to bring nature inside can be buying flowers, or even taking photos of your favorite places in nature. Use these pictures as backgrounds on a mobile phone or computer screen as a reminder of those relaxing moments you have captured.
We all have different experiences of nature, and different reasons for wanting to connect with it more. We invite you to connect with nature and share what this means for you at Togetherall.