5 ways to ease #Anxiety through nature

Ease anxiety by enjoying your summer!

Actually, if you have anxiety it is hard to enjoy anything! When I was anxious I hardly left the house since it was hard to go places and be around people.

This was the worse thing to do. Unfortunately, there was less to keep my mind occupied at home and my wild imagination added to my torment.

I have a middle ground (pun intended) to help ease anxiety when you want to get out of your head but are not ready for social interaction.

Go outside in nature!

Here are 5 ways to ease Anxiety through nature

1. Connection

When I am stressed, I lie right on the ground and let all of my troubles flow out of my body and into the earth. In that moment, nothing matters and I am just there connected to this huge planet under me, supporting me.

Anxiety makes us feel separate, like we can’t handle the world. It is an “us versus them” feeling of vulnerability and out of control. You can find connection in nature to calm your mind, heart and soul.

Tweet: Find connection in nature to calm your mind, heart and soul. http://ctt.ec/2Pk01+ #anxiety @JodiAman

We can go outside, look at a leaf, smell a flower, watch some chipmunks play, and these things enter our world.


2. Understand transience

Everything changes. Flowers sprout, bloom and fade.

One of our biggest fears is loss. But even sadness and loss is temporary. When something goes, something else comes. It’s just the way of the world. Nature reminds us that no matter where you are in life, there is more to come. It is not over.

Nothing stays empty. Nature will just fill it in.

3. Gives us a larger perspective.

Our problems are little when matched to this massive world. Things that we we think matter so much pale in comparison to a huge ocean. There are more stars in the sky than worries in our heads.

Out here we can let go and be part of something bigger than our constant fear and doubt.

4. Oxygen

We’ve known breathing is by far the best thing to do to ease our nervous system. Sometimes when we are anxious, we forget to exhale and then can’t get breaths in since our lungs are full already.

Go sit by a tree or a plant. Make sure you are exhaling so your lungs are ready for some yummy fresh oxygen. Talk to the plant. Ask it anything you want. Plants have loads to teach us. You may want to touch or look at the texture of the plant, too, (I do this to feel connected.)  and smell the amazing smells!

5. Distraction

The other day I went on a hike with my son. We saw a raccoon, a chipmunk, three frogs, countless birds, a squirrel, tons of wild flowers, and two butterflies. We forgot about the whole world when we were in the woods.

It is amazing how 20 minutes of walking can ease anxiety and clear your mind.

Ease anxiety by walking outside

Shinrin Yoko is the Japanese therapeutic practice of walking outside where one engages in nature using all of the five senses. Research has suggested that the scent of trees the sound of brooks, and the feel of sunshine have a physiological calming effect (decreases cortisol up to 16%!). Yes!

Find some green space anywhere, even if it is a houseplant. Everyday, and then especially when you are anxious, sit by it, look at it, smell it, feel it, and do some deep breathing.

What do you do when you are anxious? 

19 thoughts on “5 ways to ease #Anxiety through nature”

  1. Sebastian Aiden Daniels

    I give a thumbs up for all of these things. I might have said it before, but the most calming thing for me is going out under the stars at night and staring at them while breathing deeply and reminding myself how miniscule I am to the rest of the universe. Anxiety makes us feel like the world is crushing us, but that isn’t the case. I also use to have really bad anxiety and would stay in the house and it would end up making it worse. Act opposite your emotions is the way to go in situations like those : D. Thanks for the reminder about the importance of nature.

  2. Kathy @ SMART Living 365.com

    Yes Jodi! Nature is so-so-so very important for a peaceful and happy life. I live in the desert southwest and it get REALLY hot in the summer. So my husband and I rent a cabin up in the mountains for the month of August in this dinky little town. People always ask us, “what do you do up there all month?” And we just laugh and tell them “nature.” Some things are difficult to explain but you did it brilliantly. ~Kathy

  3. Hi Jodi,
    I too have felt the therapeutic powers of nature. The flowers, tossing their heads as if beckoning us to their side to share the smiles, the whispering pines filling our ears with unique form of music, the rustling of leaves, the waters gushing down the cascading streams, the gurgling waterfalls and myriad other sounds define the diversity that nature offers us! Even the setting sun leaves a message of hope for us…a new dawn. I love Nature in all its moods.

    I have always felt that Nature is more than just a mother! She makes us perceptive, patient and perseverant. The lessons we learn in her lap are more profound than modern research results.
    Balroop Singh recently posted..Ignorance is Bliss?My Profile

  4. Michelle@breathofoptimism

    I believe in the subtle powers that nature has to offer those if you are willing to look for it. I have been walking every morning at a state park that is in close proximity of my apartment. It is very relaxing, and I find that the rest of my day is very stress free. I am very lucky because the wilderness is not too far from where I live. There is something about the sun shining down on your face with the wind blowing your hair while listening to the all of the animals in the forest.

  5. Wow, didn’t know that it decreased cortisol, but that makes perfect sense. I find that even when I can’t be outside, just looking outside at something — flowers, birds, squirrels — lessens my anxiety. But of course, being outside is the best. p.s. I love that photo of you lying down. Full-body connection to Mother Earth = awesomesauce.
    Laura Zera recently posted..Mental Health: What Is Sensory Defensiveness?My Profile

  6. Very insightful. I’ve never quite seen the beneficial nature of nature in this way. Thanks for another subtle but not too subtle mind opening.

  7. Such wonderful tips and you look so beautiful in the photos. Looks beautiful in your neck of the woods. So lush. Reminds me how the Oprah magazine always featured a double-spread photo of a peaceful local, so that readers could look at the picture and feel a sense of calmness. That’s what your photos do for me. Thanks, Jodi!
    monicastangledweb recently posted..Miscreants & Wise GuysMy Profile

  8. Jodi,
    I love your videos. They are full of easy and simple tips to counter stress and anxiety and many other mental health issues. Your style is great and emphatic. I have been sharing your videos on Facebook and my friends like them too. Thanks for the amazing library of knowledge in your tweets. I follow you regularly. Thanks and keep up the great work.

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