In terms of strengthening mental health, many people might be suggested you take up physical activity, take up a creative hobby, and build relationships. They are useful, but we would prefer you to spend time outside.
Gardening is the best thing to do when you’re outside. Because getting green-fingered with gardening can aid you in achieving good mental health and well-being. That’s why we have come up with some of the major mental health and well-being benefits of gardening.
Benefits of Gardening for mental health
1) Improves focus
Break up your work day with garden time, and boom you can see fast-acting benefits. Just spend some time outside in your garden, and you can easily clear out all the fog present in your brain. With this you can focus on your deep work, or in simple words you can devote your full attention to the work.
According to studies, people who are into gardening can lessen the symptoms related to the severity of ADHD. ADHD is a kind of dysregulation in attention due to the presence of lower dopamine. Well, you don’t have to worry about it if you like gardening.
2) No more stress
The relaxing effect was seen by researchers when they were investigating forest bathing. It is a kind of Japanese concept that comprises walking in forested areas. They saw the differences in the mood of participants while doing tasks like transplanting and working on a computer.
The thing to note in the transplanting participants is that they had lower stress levels in comparison to participants sitting in front of a computer. Even transplanting participants experienced lower blood pressure. With this, it is clear that there is a de-stressing effect in gardening.
3) Boost the immune system
While you’re gardening you get exposed to vitamin D and natural light, which acts as a source of boosting the immune system. With this, you can easily build resistance against any kind of chronic disease. You might be surprised by knowing that even the dirt ending up under fingernails can aid in boosting immunity.
In garden dirt, there is friendly soil bacteria is present, namely Mycobacterium vaccae. It is strong enough to alleviate symptoms of any disease which can be resulted due to weakened immunity. Thus, there is no need to get afraid of making your hands dirty. That bacteria can be ingested from vegetables you growing or get absorbed with inhalation.
4) Keep in shape
You might already know when someone moves their body regularly, then there are chances for lower anxiety and boost mood. Well, gardening is the best option to go for which comes with a lot of physical activity. If you don’t want to hit the gym, then also you can feel good and maintain muscle tone by working daily on your garden.
Gardening comprises a range of movements which simply means there will be fewer repetitive injuries in comparison to structured exercise. For instance, while weeding, you’ve to lie on your butt, and belly, lie on the side, and have to do many positions which are similar to any yoga class.
5) Being present
If you give it a try to mindfulness and stay in the present, then you can expect benefits like a reduction in stress and rumination. Among the practices of mindfulness, gardening is one of them, as it also requires full concentration.
Even you will have enough time to have a look at your beautiful garden. In gardening, there is a need for a range of tasks such as pruning, weeding, etc. All these tasks will force you to focus on the task, due to which you’ve to stay in the present and keep aside all your worries for a short period.
6) Eat healthy
If you have a garden, you can yield the healthiest and freshest food. It is up to the food that will impact your mental health. If you’re looking for an effective treatment for depression, then must give it a try for dietary changes.
Let’s take the instance of the Mediterranean diet. In this, there are minimally processed whole foods are being consumed, which are much similar to the food you will going to yield in the garden. One more advantage is that you played a huge role in growing that particular food.
7) Switch to a growth mindset
Have you ever met people with growth mindsets? If yes, then you might know that they always look for positives. There is a big part being played by our mind in dealing with negative situations in CBT. In simple words, it is one of the powerful practices if someone wants to combat depression.
While gardening, there are chances of encountering issues like floods, garden pests, etc. Such things might derail your progress but don’t forget that with the completion of every challenge you become a better gardener. This will impact your real life directly, for instance, you can overcome any issue easily.
8) Grounding and stronger connection
By gardening, you can experience a much deeper sense of nature in terms of connection and belonging. Even if you’re just growing herbs then also gardening grounds will give value to growing your food.
However, this kind of grounding applies to your social sphere. With gardening, you can aid in strengthening connections with other people. Thus, you’ll get an opportunity to meet others who have similar interests to yours.
Gardening tips on mental health
1) Grow what you love
Just like everyone, you might also have a favorite vegetable, fruit, or flower. The amount of care can vary based on distinctive plants. So, start choosing what you want to grow according to the time you have, the money you can invest, and the location where you live.
2) Try out the community garden
Have you ever heard of a community garden? If not, then just imagine a space where plants are being grown on smaller individual plots or in one large area. You can visit one of your nearest community gardens by searching online. This can be a perfect place for someone who wants to learn more about gardening from experienced gardeners.
3) Switch to indoor plants
If you don’t have your land, then don’t worry you can still start gardening. There are a range of plants that can be grown well indoors. For this, you only require containers, potting soil, artificial sunlight source or window, and other things according to whatever you want to grow.
Now, for you, the garden might not be limited to a place where you grow plants. It is a space where you focus, relax, and connect with nature and people. So, there is no need to wait anymore. Let’s get started by investing in the future of our mental health and well-being.