With it almost being the middle of winter already, many people will be very aware of how cold it has been this year. However, this coldness should not discourage you from spending time outside in nature. So wrap up in some layers and head outside to experience nature, proven to be one of the most reliable boosts to both mental and physical wellbeing. Take a look for yourself:
1. Experience a mental boost
We are constantly bombarded by information that can lead to mental fatigue, constantly demanding our focus and attention. Think of all the billboards, crowds of people, and traffic you experienced just on your way to work today. All of these are incredibly taxing mentally. Our brain needs energy to function and just like muscles, the brain can run out of energy if it is constantly in use. It is likely we have all experienced this feeling of mental fatigue — where your brain just does not seem to want to cooperate or work the way you want it to? Lucky for us, nature is both a painless and easy way to get your brain back into gear and working at its optimal. To restore focus and willpower, it is important to give your brain regular recovery time – just as you allow your muscles to rest over night after exercise fatigue. Immersing your brain in restorative environments, even as simple as pictures of nature or seeing a natural scene through a window, has been shown to restore mental energy, concentration and attention. Studies have also found nature can sharpen your thinking and creativity; individuals performed more accurately when repeating a sequence of numbers after going for a walk in nature and boosted their performance on a creative problem solving test by 50% after immersing themselves in nature. If you need more of an incentive, 20 minutes spent outside can wake you up as much as one cup of coffee. So ditch the coffee and instead opt for heading outside to start your brain the right way in the morning.