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Connecting with nature offers many benefits for wellbeing, something I see each day in my work as a mental health counselor offering nature walk and talk therapy. What I hear from clients about nature walk and talk is they feel more relaxed in nature than in an office setting, that they appreciate the chance to move their bodies, and taking in the beauty of a natural setting helps create a new perspective.
Research supports the idea that exposure to nature has wide-ranging wellness benefits, from decreasing anxiety and depression symptoms to decreasing blood pressure and stress hormones and soothing the nervous system.
As a practitioner of ecotherapy, I take the approach we can intentionally cultivate a relationship with nature, and in the process, learn about the place we live and get to know ourselves better. We can look for ways to practice reciprocity in our interactions with nature, meaning we not only receive nourishment from the natural world but look for ways to give back. The result is healthier humans and a healthier ecosystem.
With these concepts in mind, consider these five simple ways to deepen your connection with nature and support your wellbeing.
Elizabeth Harvey Abrams is a licensed mental health counselor and practitioner of ecotherapy in New Mexico. Elizabeth offers nature walk and talk therapy in the Las Cruces area as well as virtual therapy throughout the state. Learn more at elizabethharveycounseling.com.