There have been several studies linking living in the countryside, getting physical activity, and connecting with nature in any form, to improvements in mental health. Even urban green space does help a lot with your wellbeing. Grounding or any direct contact with the earth, a tree or grass, has been shown through electrical connectivity to support immune responses and reduce stress, pain and depression.
But in a world where there is a high concentration of us in urban spaces, where we spend a long time looking at our phones and screens, and currently with Covid keeping us locked in our houses for long periods of time, our mental health is suffering. With our environmental hopes, health research, policy and public action working together we can find ways to improve health and wellbeing and protect our earth and our kids’ future. Protecting nature won’t just improve the environment but will also improve our general health and mental health and keep us motivated to do even more. Aligning our values and goals with saving the environment will in the long run help our wellbeing.
In addition to direct contact with nature, uniting to support our environment gives additional benefits linked with supporting our mental and physical wellbeing, because it gives us a purpose beyond ourselves, it give us engagement/flow and meaning or a purposeful existence, two of the central pillars of the PERMA model in Positive Psychology theory.
Activities to improve mental health
We have put here a few of the activities that have been proven to improve our mental health, all of which link closely to our relationship with the environment and the social aspects of our wonderful community.
- Physical Exercise
- Mindfulness Meditation
- Presence in the moment
- Values and goals linked to something beyond ourselves
- Beauty appreciation
At GCBB we thrive on preserving these activities starting locally. We work tirelessly through raising awareness, our fantastic community, practical activities and connection to each other to support your wellbeing through our mission to improve the environment. If we can take small steps all together the positive effect we can create now, will be felt for years to come.
Articles about nature and wellbeing:
A ‘nature hour’ should be part of the school curriculum every day, say The Wildlife Trusts
Because it shows how increased contact with nature benefits kids’ wellbeing and health over time, as well as their social confidence and creativity.
The Positive Effects Of Nature On Your Mental Well-Being
This is a more general article about nature in general not just for kids, but again same conclusions and benefits.
Environment, health and wellbeing: a systemic approach
This is an article from 2014 about an environmental EU agency study on environment, health and wellbeing.
Report of the EEA Scientific Committee Seminar on Environment, Human Health and Well-Being – Advancing the Knowledge Base
This is the official 2014 report linking environment, health and wellbeing.
The Environment and Well-being
Environmental degradation and climate change are bad for our long-term well-being. Here’s why students have a particular responsibility to act against them.
How to cope with eco anxiety
This is a practical article on ways of dealing with eco anxiety written by Friends of the Earth.
Stressed about climate change? Eight tips for managing eco-anxiety
If you are feeling anxious about the environment, here are eight approaches for managing your eco-anxiety and feeling less hopeless.
The Environmental Burden on Generation Z
This is an interesting article on the effect that environmental anxiety has on the younger generation.
How to turn eco anxiety into eco action
Again a very practical way of turning eco anxiety into eco action.