Nature Therapy; It's A Thing
(Most) humans crave a connection with nature. Be it something as simple as a stroll through a park or hiking through mountain valleys. In short, man has found solace in nature for centuries. Ever feel an overwhelming sense of calm and relaxation after a day spent in the wilderness? It's not just us saying, but generations of brilliant minds, naturalists and authors have also documented the endless (therapeutic) benefits of spending time in nature. Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), an American author, naturalist, and philosopher best known for his book Walden, celebrated the therapeutic effects of nature by saying, “I believe that there is a subtle magnetism in Nature, which, if we unconsciously yield to it, will direct us aright." Or the famous words of Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959), acclaimed architect and philosopher, advised, “Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.”
Many strings of research have shown that direct contact with nature increases mental health and psychological and spiritual development. Benefits of which include stress reduction, sense of coherence and belonging, improved self-confidence, self-discipline and even a broader sense of community. Aside from stress reduction (something most of us need and will undoubtedly benefit from) being in nature bestows a sense of connectedness, meaning and overall purpose. There is a beauty in the chaotic order found in nature; everything is interconnected, yourself included. “Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better,” Albert Einstein.
This Ecotherapy - contact with nature - has been shown and proven as an effective and powerful method of therapy that is being coined 'more effective than traditional medication or psychotherapy'. The moral of this story? Next time you feel anything from depressed to frustrated, stressed - whatever it is - don’t choose retail therapy or medications– put on your hiking boots or drive off into the woods and sit by a campfire.
Photography for Up Knörth by Julia and Yuriy Manchick | Mr & Mrs Globetrot