Nature is an essential part of life, and the natural world provides many benefits to those who are fortunate enough to experience it. Nowadays, people are always spending time indoors and glued to their screens, so it’s no wonder why many people miss out on the chance to experience nature.
This is especially problematic because of nature deficit disorder ;(NDD), which describes the negative outcomes associated with spending too much time in indoor, urban environments. Although this disorder has yet to be acknowledged as a medical diagnosis, it’s easy to see why too little nature can pose a problem for people’s physical and mental health.
So, if you’re looking for a way to connect with nature, there are plenty of ways you can do it without spending too much money or exerting unnecessary effort. Here are nine hobbies that can help bring you closer to nature:
1. Grow your own garden
Having your own garden is a great way to feel like you’re reconnecting with the earth. You can grow your own fruit and vegetables or any other plant you love inside a small glass conservatory in your backyard. Or you can even grow flowers and plants inside your home if you want.
2. Go on a solo hike
Outdoor hiking trails abound across the country, and they give people the opportunity to explore and enjoy the natural world. While you’re hiking, chances are you’ll see wildlife and get a better understanding of your surroundings without all the noise that comes with civilization.
3. Take up birdwatching
Birdwatching helps people learn about nature because it teaches them to look deeply at their surroundings. Instead of just seeing an average bird fly by, birdwatchers see the small details of the wing and body shapes, colors, and patterns. You can practice birdwatching in your own backyard or at a local park.
4. Participate in some outdoor yoga or meditation classes
Tons of yoga and meditation classes take place outside, and they provide the opportunity to connect with nature deeply. Not only can it improve your health, but it gives you a chance to let go of stress and relax. And if you love being in nature, it’s hard to beat the tranquility of a destination yoga retreat.
5. Create art that connects you to nature
Art can be a great way to understand your surroundings. As an artist, you can use nature as your inspiration and create something that explains your feelings about the natural world. If you’re not artistic, don’t worry- there are plenty of ways to participate in the art without creating it yourself. You can volunteer at an art center or organize an art project with a group of friends.
6. Get involved in social activism
There are many ways to connect with nature through the use of your voice and actions. Social activism has been a great way for people to come together and work towards a common goal: making sure that we don’t destroy our planet by using too much energy or polluting it by dumping harmful chemicals into the environment.
7. Read books about nature
Books are a great way to learn more about the natural world and support the environment. If you want to get closer to nature, pick up a book related to it and start reading! There are so many books out there, from ecology textbooks to art history guides, so you’ll never run out of different ways to explore your interests.
8. Volunteer for an environmental organization
You don’t have to go outside and explore nature to reconnect with it. Many environmental organizations need people inside their offices who want to help them fight for clean energy and a sustainable planet. Volunteering is a great way to learn more about the environment and make sure that we all appreciate what we have before it’s gone.
9. Spend time outside every day, no matter how short it is
There will be days when you don’t feel like doing anything, but getting outside is important. Even if you can only spend five minutes in nature, it’s still better than nothing. Take a walk around your backyard or go for a hike near your house.
Any time spent in nature is a time well-spent. So, if you want to feel more connected to your environment, try one of the hobbies listed above. You won’t regret doing any of it because nature will give back to you. Plus, simply being in nature can boost your health and help you feel more relaxed.