There is no contest between spending time indoors as opposed to spending time outdoors, at least not to me. Spending time in nature can be one of the most fulfilling and healthy activities.
The Japanese practice that’s called Shinrin-Yoku, which is the art of “forest bathing”, is one way to immerse yourself in nature. To objective is to become renewed. The Scandinavian have a similar practice which is considered open-air living or friluftsliv. Edward O. Wilson coined the term for natural enjoyment, “Biofilia”, which is indeed spot on! It seems that there is a bond between us and all other natural systems of the world-animal and plant alike. Not only are these great ideas, but science also backs up the notion with facts.
1. In sync with Nature
I think it can be safely said that we are connected to all things in nature. This connection doesn’t mean that we only like nature; it’s much deeper than that. Scientists study Chronology or the biological rhythms which show the differences in light/dark patterns. These patterns regulate sleep, moods and hormones. This can also be called Cicadian rhythm or synchronization of our biological system. We sync with nature and this is why nature is so good for us!
2. Heart of the matter
It’s come to the attention of scientists that nature is good for the heart as well. With “forest bathing”, a correlation between blood pressure, varied heart rate and pulse was made showing nature had a huge impact. It has been found that sitting in the forest may reduce stress levels. This could be the reason for the direct connection between outdoors and the cardiovascular system.
3. Outdoor Exercise is Better
Although there are hundreds of gyms world-wide, outdoor activity may be more beneficial. Studies show that fitness outdoors improves mood and helps the individual to feel as though they have accomplished more than within the confines of the gym. Exercise by walking, jogging or swimming is also more enjoyable and energetic than simply using the treadmill.
4. Immunity by Nature
Exposure to the great outdoors improves the immune system too! Boosting immune cells helps us fight off diseases such as cancer and viruses as well. A few doses of nature a week can prove significant positive results.
5. More Nature/Less Pain
Simply looking at natural scenery works wonders in soothing pain. This beautiful distraction not only soothes the mind but also relaxes muscles that stiffen with stress during pain. I think pain doesn’t stand a chance with a hefty dose of the outdoors.
If you aren’t a fan of nature, then maybe you should reconsider. The benefit of enjoying the forest, fields and hills are enough to change your life. Step out of your urban environment for a bit and take a stroll, take a dip or just sit out under the trees. You will be glad you had a change of mind. Go! Enjoy!
By Sherrie H.