Those who cope with depression understand that it can be a draining experience that limits yourself-confidence, stamina, and motivation to try new things. Hiding away indoors, disinterested in the ongoings of everyday life, and having feelings of sadness can damage a person’s psyche. There is life blossoming and blooming on the other side of the doorway that could quite possibly offer an opportunity to comfort and relieve some of the melancholy feelings you might be having daily.
Ahh, the great outdoors. There is no better way to escape the depressive doldrums of being cooped up in your house for months on end from a national pandemic than going outside and taking a deep breath of fresh air. Spring is about to be sprung, and there is no better time to relieve some of that pent-up tension by heading outside for some much-needed activity.
Being outside increases your chances of being healthy and happier in the long run. Per one study, plenty of evidence suggests that exposure to natural environments can be associated with mental health benefits. Experiencing the outdoors and breathing in fresh air is a surefire way to improve your state of mind. It is exceptionally beneficial to explore an open environment and a perfect way to put yourself into a happier mood.
Mother Nature has a way of soothing some of the harsher aspects of depression in a way that can calm a person’s well-being. Spending time outdoors can help relieve some of the stresses that come with both major and minor depression. Being out in the wilderness offers an appeasing effect on many symptoms that affect those suffering from various forms of depression.
*Note that if you plan to go outside and enjoy the great outdoors, please abide by local restrictions and follow COVID guidelines. Wear masks in public settings, use social distancing, and limit yourself to smaller group settings.
It’s essential to explore your options when looking for outdoor activities to improve your mood during your struggles with depression. There are many different alternatives to lying around your house that await you outside in the natural world. Let’s examine some of the various options available at a moment’s notice.
Whether you are alone or amongst friends, exercise is an exhilarating way to ease one’s struggles with depression and despair. While exercising outdoors, bodily activity immensely improves your health and physical fitness while reducing anxiety, stress, and depressive tendencies. There are plenty of ways to exercise your body and mind in the fresh air on a sunny day.
- Walking: A simple walk around your neighborhood, a beach, or a local wooded area can benefit you in more ways than one. According to one study, significantly lower depression, less perceived stress, and improved mental health and well-being are linked with group nature walks. Whether you are with a group of friends, your favorite pet, or on your own, a pleasant stroll out and about can surely improve your outlook on life.
- Jogging: If you want to enhance your walking exercise moderately, try a light jog to get your heart rate going. Finding a lovely path in a nearby park to jog on can help boost your mood. By picking up your pace, you will release endorphins that can help with pain relief.
- Biking: Another great way to relieve stress and depression is to hop on a bike and go for a nice little ride around your town, countryside, or local beach path. Get your motor going by pedaling out your frustrations. A bike ride can improve your mood, even on a cloudy day.
- Hiking: One of the best ways to lower your stress levels and embrace nature is going for a relaxing hike in the woods. Most forested areas have varying trails of difficulty to test your abilities maneuvering through the great outdoors. Taking in your surroundings on a hike offers an opportunity to process your thoughts productively while diminishing the negative feelings you might have had at the start of your adventure.
- Swim/Surf/Paddleboard: If the temperature is right, nothing can beat a dip in the water to alleviate sadness and despair. The ocean can offer instant calmness to someone who suffers from depression. By taking a swim, catching a wave, or paddling in open waters, you will release serotonin, making you feel joyful and stress-free amongst the marine life.
- Yoga: By taking your yoga mat outside and exercising your mind, body, and soul in an outdoor environment, you will reduce the impact of exaggerated stress responses. Yoga incorporates techniques that help manage symptoms of depression. Not only will it help relieve stress, but it also helps develop your overall health.
If you live with depression, one method of dealing with this common mental health issue is finding a nice, quiet spot outside to meditate and achieve mental clarity. When done correctly, outdoor meditation can help you focus and acknowledge your thoughts to move forward towards positive thinking. Meditating benefits you by making you self-aware about your emotions while helping to control depression more efficiently.
Another way to reduce the severity of depression is to find some time and get your hands dirty while working in a garden. Cultivating plants in a garden helps you engage with nature head-on while regulating your emotions in a calming environment. By focusing on the happy plant life you are helping grow in the soil, your mind will be free from negative thoughts. Your self-esteem will also improve as the garden continues to grow under your care.
In the simplest of terms, nature makes us happy. When you spend time outdoors engaging in wilderness activities, you will feel a sense of enjoyment and a positive boost to your mood. Reduce your risk of depression by exploring the opportunities available to you in the outside world.
If you feel like you might still be suffering from depression or symptoms of despair even after exploring outdoor activities, you might want to find treatment at Pulse TMS possibly. Consider TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation) therapy as a way to treat your depression and guide yourself towards newfound wellness. The process expedites the proper flow of chemicals in the brain with painless pulses of magnetic energy. Give us a call at (310) 878-4346 to set up an appointment with our experienced team of professionals.