Imagine yourself outdoors, amongst trees and bushes, with your eyes closed and face up towards the sky. Imagine sunlight pouring it’s soothing warmth on your skin. And the fresh smell of the earth, plants, and flowers lingering around you. How good do you feel? How good would you feel if you were actually outside experiencing this?

There’s no doubt, nature holds a magical healing power. When one goes into nature, there’s a grounding connection that should never be denied – only felt. But what is it about nature that makes it so healing? If you’re feeling down in the ruts, go outside! This is called “Ecotherapy,” also known as “Green Therapy.” Physically, there’s benefits to breathing fresh air and soaking up nutrients from the sun, however, a growing body of evidence is proving nature to be beneficial to mental health.

A study done the UK in 2007 compared the mental state of participants who took a walk in a park outdoors versus those who took a walk in a shopping center. The study revealed that:

  • 71% of the group who took a walk in a park outdoors reported feeling less depressed, in comparison to 45% of the group who walked inside a shopping center.
  • On top of that, 22% of those who walked in the shopping center reported actually feeling more depressed.
  • 71% of the participants who walked in the park reported feeling less tense, in comparison to 50% of those who walked in the shopping center.
  • And to top it all off, 90% of participants who walked in the park reported feeling an increase in self-esteem, in comparison to 44% of those who walked in the shopping center.

As humans, we are naturally interested in nature. Even if you’re not an “outdoorsy person,” you can still see the beauty in a majestic waterfall or a sunset on the beach. Humans evolved in nature, it’s our original home. Think about animals living in the wild. When they are removed from their natural habitats, their well being and behavior tends to digress. They experience a sense of disconnect. However, as humans, we may not experience this disconnect as drastically as some of these animals. Yet, if we only remain indoors for too long, we do tend to go stir-crazy at some point. We need to be outside! Nature and mental health are connected.

So make more of an effort to free your mind, body, and soul. Go outside! Let nature heal you. And you don’t have to feel out of sorts or mentally unstable either, everyone should recharge their batteries in nature.



New research shows benefits of ecotherapy for mental health and wellbeing. (2013, October 23). Mind. Retrieved August 20, 2014, from

What is ecotherapy. (2009). Ecotherapy Heals. Retrieved August 20, 2014, from

Research shows that spending time with nature has extensive mental health benefits. (2012, October 26). Natural News. Retrieved August 20, 2014, from