This post is developed in partnership with BetterHelp.
It’s easy to enjoy spending time in nature. Feeling the sun on our face and the blades of grass on our feet has been shown to be a way to boost our mental wellbeing. As much as we’d all love to have the kind of lifestyle that allows us to spend time in nature, it’s not always possible between work, family and daily commitments. But there are ways to get the mental health benefits of being in nature without ever going outside.
In this article, we’ll delve into some of the creative ways you can experience the mental benefits of nature by bringing the natural world indoors. Before we begin, it’s important to understand that it’s healthy to look for ways to improve our wellbeing. But sometimes a hike in the mountains isn’t the answer, and that’s okay. There are times when we become overwhelmed. and the healthiest thing we can do is to seek the support of a doctor or mental health professional. For some, the answer will be online therapy. Online platforms like BetterHelp online therapy give you the ability to meet with a licensed therapist from the comfort of your home. Whatever route you choose, just know there’s help out there.
Let’s look now at some of the easy ways you can create the kind of nature-filled environment that can boost your mental wellbeing.
Surround Yourself With Plants
Taking care of plants has been experiencing a whole new level of popularity recently, and the trend doesn’t appear to be going anywhere. Caring for plants is a relaxing indoor activity, and plants add life to every room. Grab a plant the next time you go to the grocery store, even a small one can add a relaxing ritual to your day. Spend some time taking care of a plant today to help boost your mental wellbeing.
Surrounding yourself with foliage may even be good for your career. According to the American Society for Horticultural Science, people who work in offices with indoor plants or windows said they experience a higher level of job satisfaction.
Add Greenery In Many Forms
No green thumb? No problem! Photographs of plants and natural phenomena also work to help bring the benefits of nature indoors. Get creative about the many ways you can add more natural elements to your environment.
If you have a beautiful photograph you took on a hike, make that your computer screensaver. Add a nature-inspired photo to the home screen of your phone, or keep a coffee table book with beautiful nature pictures on hand to flip through when you need a moment. There are so many amazing nature documentaries on streaming platforms, try picking an animal documentary the next time you’re looking for something to watch on Netflix. Looking out the window at plants and trees has also been shown to work. Consider situating your desk or your work area so that you can look out the window.
Create A Natural Soundscape
Bringing plants into your home or office helps make your surroundings look more natural. To get even more benefits, you can also make environment sound more natural. There are free YouTube channels that play relaxing soundtracks, plus apps for phones and tablets that play nature sounds. A white noise generator is also an option. Consider setting up a voice-activated speaker, then all you have to do is ask Alexa to play the sound of raindrops, whale noises or birds chirping.
According to research, spending two hours a week in nature is associated with good health and wellbeing. Start getting more nature in your life by taking whatever small step you can today, even if it’s simply picking out a new screensaver for your phone or taking a moment to stare out the window at a patch of colorful flowers. Finding new ways to surround yourself with nature indoors can help you can enjoy the mental health benefits that come from being in the great outdoors.