Free To Connect

By opening people’s eyes to nature and the great outdoors, lockdown’s new perspective throws up questions about how and why people respond to nature so strongly and why it can have such a positive impact on our mental health. So it is no wonder that the theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week (10-16Continue reading “Free To Connect”

Nature’s Remedy

At last spring is here, and as I’ve just heard that April is National Stress Awareness Month, this seems an opportunity to highlight how nature can ease the stresses which have become so common in everyday life. No, nature won’t remove these stresses, but it might help rein them in or create a sense ofContinue reading “Nature’s Remedy”

One Year On

Last Tuesday’s national Day Of Reflection set me thinking again about this last crazy year and how I for one have seen positives emerge in amidst all the darkness. Positives like people turning to nature, to music and to creativity in their droves, painting, drawing and crafting. Sometimes this has helped distract us, liberated usContinue reading “One Year On”

The Sound Of Nature

Experiencing nature through sound might boost mood, calm us, excite or uplift us. Nature’s impact on wellbeing usually focuses on the sights we see, or on exercising outdoors. But there’s a wealth of sounds to draw on as well. Biophony (as sounds of the natural world are known) has become a tool for monitoring biodiversity,Continue reading “The Sound Of Nature”

Wild And Urban

For people and nature alike, towns and cities can be places of opportunity – or wastelands. Many people find urban living exciting and positive, while others find it overwhelming or depressing. And urban environments can be hostile to wildlife too, as light pollution confuses species as different as moths and migrating birds, street trees mayContinue reading “Wild And Urban”

Look And See

Remembering the famous carol ‘The holly and the ivy’ got me thinking about the importance of plants at all times: and how trying to see and notice might become a practicable, everyday way to boost wellbeing. In many woods (the setting for the carol), the holly and the ivy would stand out as the onlyContinue reading “Look And See”

Talking Of Trees

Planting a tree is an investment in the future, an act of hope. It also recognizes trees’ enormous impacts, not only on the natural environment and on ecosystems but on wellbeing. Of all features of the natural world, trees have maybe the most widely proven impact on our wellbeing: easing fear, anxiety and depression, connectingContinue reading “Talking Of Trees”

Still There

As nature falls dormant once again, its power to boost wellbeing might seem less obvious. Weather can have a strong impact on mood. At this time of year in particular, nature itself can fuel depression, as nights draw in and growth slows or halts. And maybe never more so than this year, when autumn andContinue reading “Still There”

Rooted and Grounded

At a time when we connect with other people more and more through screens and our lives have become more and more virtual, nature can become a counterbalance. Connecting with the natural world actively by planting, growing or clearing makes us almost literally rooted and grounded, with more of a feeling of place. Planting bulbsContinue reading “Rooted and Grounded”