Getting Outside Can Improve Your Mental Health
It is getting to be the time of year when the weather can seem quite welcoming. You can get outside without bundling up, and you can take advantage of a whole range of activities and amenities that allow you to soak in the sun, commune with nature, get some exercise, and set aside your worries for a while.
Let’s take a look at how nature benefits mental health. With luck, by the time you are finished reading this blog entry, you will be eager to get outdoors!
Soak in the Sun
Vitamin D is important to your overall mental well-being, and an excellent source of the vitamin happens to be sunlight. While vitamin D can be found in some foods, spending time in natural sunlight is actually a better, more consistent source of the nutrient.
A lack of vitamin D has been linked to depression and seasonal affective disorder, so taking advantage of good weather to get outside is a great idea. As a bonus, you will also be supporting your physical health in a variety of ways—and better physical health is intertwined with better mental health.
Commune with Nature
Getting out into nature has been shown to have a positive impact on mental health—and there appear to be real benefits to getting out of an urban environment and into a more naturally beautiful space.
From small public parks to larger natural spaces, odds are reasonably good there is a patch of nature you could spend some time exploring not too far from where you are. When you make a point to get out to see the world around you (perhaps even leaving your phone behind!), you will likely experience a reduction in stress as you add more time in the natural world to your routine.
Get Some Exercise
Whether you are hiking, walking the dog, playing catch with a friend, or even mowing the lawn, getting outdoors is a great way to get some exercise. And exercise is essential to both your physical health and your mental health.
For many, getting exercise outdoors is far more enjoyable than working out in a gym or at home. In fact, it can feel a lot less like exercise and a lot more like an activity you really enjoy in the great outdoors. Adding even a brief walk outside to your daily routine really can have significant benefits.
Set Aside Your Worries
There is just no denying it: A day spent in a beautiful outdoor setting is almost always better than an afternoon spent in an office. Part of the reason that is true is because (other than various landscaping chores around the house) nature makes very few demands. You can enjoy your time with friends or family—or even all by yourself—and leave the pressures of the workday and other demands on your time behind for a bit.
When you do that, you give yourself a chance to recharge—and you build up some resilience that can help you deal with stressors more calmly and effectively.
When It Comes to Nature, You Can’t Do Much Better Than Colorado
There is an abundance of natural wonders in Colorado, which means you have plenty of wonderful options for getting outside and taking advantage of good weather, beautiful scenery, and more.
We suggest a few options in this previous blog entry, but we are also confident that you can find the perfect spot (or spots) all on your own.
Get yourself motivated, and then get yourself outside in Colorado. It is an exceptional way to work to improve your mental health.
It Is Only Natural to Get the Help You Need
Good mental health is just as essential to your life as good physical health, but many people simply do not think about working proactively to improve their mental well-being. Others may be aware that they should pursue mental health care, but are reluctant to do so—perhaps due to lingering stigmas in society.
At Peak View Behavioral Health, we are committed to providing mental health care that is personalized to your needs. We emphasize evidence-based practices delivered with empathy and respect. If you are experiencing symptoms of depression, anxiety, or a trauma-induced disorder, we can help you improve your mental health—and maintain those improvements over time. When you are ready to take those first steps toward better mental health, we hope those steps will lead you to Peak View.