The most common disease of today is stress. Have you ever wondered why that is? Sure, people say it’s because of the fast-paced living and vibrant environment, but that’s not all. Our concrete jungles may be practical for the life we lead, but the grey buildings and traffic noise pollution can be too much for a creature which first immerged from nature. Being in the city constantly can also explain why people’s stress levels go down after they spend some time in nature.
This all leads us to the conclusion that you should have your own slice of nature in your home if you want to stay mentally healthy. You don’t need to spend thousands on a therapist just to get your stress levels down and achieve inner peace.
Instead, you need to focus on your garden and reaping all of the benefits spending time outside can offer you.
1. Getting your creative juices going
Working in your garden and taking care of it daily will make you more creative. How is this possible? Well, gardening is a form of art like no other. You have to figure out how to fill out the space, how to landscape, and what colors to use to tie it all together. As well as that, there are accessories you can add to make the space look more daring, vintage or anything else that might come to mind.
From choosing the right plants to organizing everything, your creativity will be the one skill you exercise most. You’ll need to train your eye for detail, too. This will all be helpful in other areas in life, as creativity and imagination always make things better.
If you’re not a very creative person, gardening is your opportunity to show yourself and the world just how amazing your creations can be. It doesn’t matter if you model yourself after someone else or if you stay true to just your vision. In either case, you’ll be getting your creative juices flowing.
The best part is that the results don’t have to be perfect the first time. Every mistake will be a new opportunity to try something different and further exercise your creativity. This will teach you to see things that others simply don’t and not to punish yourself for making mistakes. Instead, you’ll realize they’re perfectly normal and that they show you in which direction you should move. This can be applied to all areas of life, thus making you feel more in control of everything going on around you. This is valuable for your mental health because it teaches you there is always something you can do to improve certain areas of your life, even if it seems like it’s up to the universe to solve everything.
Hopelessness just leads to sadness and depression, but creativity and joy are perfect ways to fight that. So, by doing what you love and finding new ways to do it, you’ll see that things aren’t so hopeless after all. Can you think of a more powerful motivator and confidence booster than that?
2. Writing nature a “thank you” note
By nurturing your own garden, you are basically saying thank you to nature for everything it has provided for you and the rest of the world. Building our society is the most advanced thing we’ve ever done as a species, but it came at a huge cost. We’re living in an environmental crisis today and it’s our job to make things right as much as we can.
Giving back to nature can make you feel connected to it in ways you didn’t think were possible. Once you start gardening, you start understanding how and why nature works the way it works. The things you’ll see in your garden as it blossoms will help you realize just how amazing the world we live in is.
This is a unique opportunity to see your little buds become astonishing flowers, to see birds that you could have sworn just hatched take their first flight, and to see your organic waste being converted into mulch you can use to further nourish your garden. This is a unique ecosystem that needs to be preserved and saved and you have the opportunity to make it happen and see it up close. Why miss out?
Not only will this teach you to be more humble and appreciate the world, but it will also increase your empathy and make you more attuned to the needs of others. You’ll gain a valuable perspective on life and understand people’s motivation and emotions on a deeper level. On top of this, it will help you practice mindfulness. This is key to getting to know yourself better, gaining control over your thoughts and emotions, and ultimately becoming a better person. Let’s not forget it’s also key to achieving inner peace.
3. Healthy stomach, healthy mind
What you eat can greatly affect your mental health. For example, eating lots of sugar and candy makes you sleepy and depressed even if it does give you a sugar rush first. Eating veggies and fruits may not be instantly rewarding like sugar is, but it has long-term effects that you’ll love. Fresh fruits and veggies can increase your energy levels, improve your mood, and clear up the fog in your mind. You’ll also be less irritable and more relaxed when dealing with life issues.
The trouble is that most fruits and veggies are infused with chemicals today. This decreases their nutritional value and makes them unhealthier. The good news is that you have a garden and there’s nothing stopping you from growing your own food.
The food you grow at home will be free of chemicals and full of vitamins, thus giving you the benefits you were looking for. Growing your own food also means you’ll be spending much less on groceries, thus giving you more financial freedom.
By making sure your tummy is healthy, your garden will ensure your brain is healthy, too. You might not notice the difference in the beginning, but soon enough you’ll find that you enjoy food much more than before and that you feel light, energized, and satisfied after a good home-cooked meal.
4. Exercising is great for mental health
If you haven’t heard already, exercising is one of the best ways to improve your mental health. It helps your body break down the stress and tension you’re holding in your muscles while also prompting the production of happy chemicals. Even just moving around and walking around your home can improve your mood and make things more clear. Imagine what working in your garden can be like.
First of all, you’ll be exposed to fresh air and the warm sun. Just like the little plant you’re taking care of, you need these things to be happy. The oxygen will end up in your blood and find its way to your brain, thus improving cognitive function and focus. The sun naturally elevates the mood and gives your body the vitamin D it needs to stay healthy. These two things combined mean that you’ll be much more mentally stable and that achieving inner peace will come easy.
This isn’t all you’re getting from gardening, though. While you work with your high-quality garden tools to make your veggies and flowers grow, you’ll also be exercising your body. You’ll be working your biceps and triceps daily, just enough to keep them healthy and strong. If you’re moving things around, digging, and planting, you’ll be putting all of your muscles to work. This can give you a stronger core and frame, but also improve your cardio. Feeling physically healthy is essential for feeling mentally healthy, too.
By focusing on your body and letting your garden give you the exercise you need, you’re actually going to be building confidence and better relationships with the world.
5. Some solitude can do you wonders
Finally, your garden can be the oasis you need in today’s concrete jungle. When you’re constantly surrounded by people and exposed to information even when you come home, it can be hard to let your guard down and relax. Let’s not mention your brain will be exhausted from having to process all that information all of the time. No matter how extroverted you are and how much you may enjoy keeping in touch with people, you need to give yourself a mental break every once in a while. This means going completely off the grid.
For some people, this can mean spending an entire weekend in their garden without others interrupting them. For the majority of others, though, the need to be alone and rest your head is present daily. An hour or two of working in your garden daily can be just the me-time you were hoping for.
It doesn’t matter if you’re watering the plants, landscaping, or just lounging around - the presence of just your garden will surely have the soothing effect you were hoping it would.
Some people even find it therapeutic to talk to their vegetables and plants. In fact, this can be beneficial for both you and your plants. Studies have shown that plants respond well to conversation and confiding in them might just be the thing you need to feel more rested. Remember that your garden is your oasis and that whatever you say in it will stay there.
Who knows, spending time alone in your garden may also teach you some things about yourself that you never would have guessed.
As you can see, your garden can be your best friend and therapist if you let it. By decorating and taking care of it, you’ll also be taking care of yourself and improving your quality of life. Reducing stress and improving your mental health isn’t hard when you’ve got the power of your therapeutic garden on your side. We’re confident you’ll start living your best life as soon as you make the necessary changes and reorganize your garden in the most Zen way possible!
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Sarah Jessica Smith is a young blogger from Sydney, Australia. She is in love with life and all the things that can make her daily routine easier. She loves to write about home improvement, lifestyle, and all the small things that make life such a great adventure.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.