The benefits of gardening go way beyond having an abundant harvest, with beautiful fruits and vegetables.
Ever wondered why people garden in prisons, nursing homes, and hospitals?
It is because gardening is very effective for maintaining good mental health.
There’s something healing and soothing about getting your hands dirty and reconnecting with nature.
The beautiful colors and scents that come with gardening and the bountiful harvest are not the only benefits that come with gardening.
There’s much, much more.
Among the many benefits is how good gardening actually is for mental health.
Take a look.
1. Gardening is therapeutic
It is normal to get stressed out by the everyday hassles and struggles of life like work and bills.
These daily stresses can affect us not just physically, but mentally as well.
Gardening is a great way to take a break and forget about these stresses for a while.
This is because you will be concentrating on one thing.
You will be focusing all your attention on either wedding, sowing, hoeing or chopping and forget about everything else.
It’s a great way to relax and free your mind from stress.
2. It gives us a sense of responsibility
Taking care of your lawn makes you responsible for it.
It will be your responsibility to ensure that the plants are watered and are free from weeds. If you fail to cater to them, they die, and you wouldn’t want that.
This instills a sense of responsibility in us.
It is great for people suffering from mental health issues because it makes them feel valued and important.
It also gives them something to live for and look forward to. It puts you in control.
Sometimes you may feel like you are losing control of your life.
Gardening is a great way to gain control of things.
You decide how to arrange your garden, what to plant, when to water your plants and everything else to do with your garden.
You control the outcome of your garden.
3. It allows us to vent our frustrations and anger
There are times when you are so angry or frustrated that you need to let it all out.
Why not go out and pull out those weeds or trim off those unwanted hedges or better yet get digging! You get to vent and have a beautiful outcome afterward.
Unleash all the frustration and create something beautiful in the end.
There are certain features of gardening that allow us to lash out and free our minds.
Cutting, chopping, digging and trimming does exactly that.
4. It is a great way to forge connections
Gardening encourages us to go out and not only connect with nature but other people as well.
It allows us to forget about ourselves for a moment and focus on other things and people.
Community gardening, for example, focuses on collective skills as opposed to individual shortcomings.
If you are battling depression or self-absorption issues, being outdoors gardening in the company of other people reminds us that we are not alone.
The social aspect is not the only way gardening helps us forge connections.
It also helps us reconnect with nature. We live in an era where everything is technologically driven. This is sometimes very unhealthy, especially to our minds.
It can bring about feelings of self-absorption which sometimes contributes to depression. Reconnecting with nature can help boost proper mental health.
It is a great way to unplug and unwind.
5. Gardening and anxiety
Anxiety is a serious mental issue that should not be taken lightly.
It can get in the way of our relationships, lifestyles and even careers. It can also cause depression.
Fortunately, gardening has a positive effect on these illnesses.
Anxiety can sometimes prevent us from going out in social settings.
If you find yourself feeling this way, then try gardening.
Gardening can help improve confidence and self-esteem.
It is rewarding to watch plants flourish.
Plants have no emotions and don’t judge.
Tending to them can be a great way to escape from people and reconnect with your carefree self. Sometimes the mere act of you outside helping improve your mood.
You can also enjoy gardening at night by installing outdoor ligIs an architecthting around your garden.
Taking time to sit out in your garden at night and watching the stars can be very therapeutic and great for your mental health.
Guest Author: Monica Gibson is an architect who enjoys blogging.