Nature Makes Us Feel More Alive

This should come as no surprise: Spending time in nature makes us feel more alive, according to a batch of recent studies. Past research has already shown that people on excursions in the wilderness feel more alive and merely thinking about past outdoor activities makes us feel happier and healthier. Just last month, a study showed that exercising outdoors for just five minutes could improve our mood and self-esteem.
But this new research shows that the increased vitality we get from being in nature goes beyond the boost we get from the physical activities and interaction with others that often accompany our time outdoors. According to Richard Ryan, a professor of psychology at the University of Rochester who worked on the study, just 20 minutes in nature a day can significantly lift our energy levels. As he explains in a write-up of the research:

Nature is fuel for the soul. Often when we feel depleted we reach for a cup of coffee, but research suggests a better way to get energized is to connect with nature.

Category: Positive Psychology


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