Think of the last time you were in a space fully covered by greenery.
For many people at Florida Tech, the answer ranges from a few minutes ago to a full day.
How we utilize our green spaces could actually make a difference in our mental health.
According to Stephanie Byrd, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in relaxation techniques, being outside “opens up our hearts and minds to possibilities.”
She asserts the connection between lessened anxiety and going outside.
A connection greater than the self leaves the mind at ease.
A factor in this interconnectivity is the air quality of a more lush area.
Breathing in fresh air has been positively linked to “feeling good.”
Air quality in nature can add a touch of relaxation to a walk to class.
Haley Murphy, astrobiology major, said that humans naturally gravitate toward nature as refuge and for familiarity.
Another factor, according to Simon N. Young, a published researcher in the field of psychology, is exposure to the natural cycle of dark and light, which is linked to serotonin re-uptake.
From the perspective of a student, the separation from the brick and mortar of school buildings fosters relaxation.
As corroborated by Byrd, burdens can be alleviated by spending time outside.
Instead of being trapped behind a screen, they can flourish in green spaces.
Kicking back with a book or some music in the botanical gardens is already a widespread pastime.
Students report that time spent outside increases focus and sometimes even lessens school pressures.
The benefits extend beyond anxiety.
The connection with nature provides a method for people to invest time in something beyond stress.
So, whether you spend your time outdoors as a means to walk to class or a quiet escape during hectic days of classes, you could improve your mood.
It’s an easy way to brighten your mood and maybe even change your outlook for a little while. Why not “go green”?