Gardening – The New Therapy!
23 April 2019
We all know that being in the great outdoors is good for us, but did you know that by whipping out a pair of gardening gloves and getting stuck in can be very beneficial to our health? The art of simply being in your back garden can do wonders for your mental health.
Recent research carried out by Harvard University found that growing flowers and being in regular contact with plants and the natural world provides a welcome remedy to the stresses of modern-day life, therefore relieving the symptoms of depression and anxiety. In addition, it can also combat high blood pressure and improve your overall fitness!
Blossom with Responsibility
Growing plants and caring for the living things in your garden can give us all, especially kids, a sense of responsibility. This responsibility gives us a purpose and a sense of worth – something we all strive for!
Dig the Digging
Believe it or not, soil has been found to have similar effects on the brain as anti-depressants to lift your mood, according to a study by the University of Bristol. A bacterial substance found in soil called Mycobacterium Vaccae is found to stimulate serotonin production, which makes you feel relaxed and happier. Most avid gardeners will tell you that when they garden, they are going to their “happy place” – now there might be some science behind it!
Time to Exercise
You may not realise it, but you are actually burning calories as you partake in general gardening activities - moving rocks, hauling dirt, raking leaves, mowing the lawn, pulling up weeds and even planting flowers. And one thing Reese Witherspoon has taught us - exercise releases endorphins and endorphins make us happy! A little bit of exercise can improve our sleep, promote weight loss and boost our self-esteem.
It’s a free therapy session
You can’t worry about bills, work, people and the usual stresses of everyday life when your mind is solely focused on the task at hand – whether that’s weeding, potting on or watering. Gardening can give you that much needed break to get out of our own heads.
Hack your frustrations away
If you’ve just had one of those days, maybe things were getting too much at work, grab a shovel and get digging in the garden! Or pick up those secateurs and take out your anger and frustration on unwanted bramble bushes. Gardening can definitely help release some of that anger, resentment or frustration that has building up all day and you’ll feel so much better for it. Find peace in the destruction!