Scientists are beginning to find evidence that being in nature has a profound impact on our brains and our behaviour, helping us to reduce anxiety, brooding, and stress, and increase our attention capacity, creativity, and our ability to connect with other people. In a recent study, hiking through an urban green space allows for attention restoration, encouraging a more open, meditative mindset. This kind of brain activity is tied to creative thinking. Removing access to multi-media devices removes the constant interruptions which pull our attention away and halt our executive, or higher thinking.
The three main benefits of nature include restoration, contemplation and inspiration. Nature helps us to think more clearly. Nature brings out the creativity in everyone. Nature restores us. It gives us physical and emotional health. From living beings to whole ecosystems, natural systems are sustainable because they are regenerative. Exposure to natural stimuli creates a so-called ‘soft-fascination’ effect, where the mind may be more easily able to access an introspective, thoughtful state, and allow the imagination to do its magic.
-- John Wright, Guest Writer