Lesson 9 of 10
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What is Ecotherapy?

Ecotherapy, also called nature remedy or ‘green therapy’, is the practice of the emergent field of ecopsychology. It has evolved into popularity by T. Roszak. Ecotherapy comes from the notion that humans are part of nature’s life web and that our psyches aren’t isolated from our natural environment. This kind of psychology has its foundation by systems theory and gives humans a way to interact positively with nature.

Nature

Many practitioners, even if they aren’t exclusively ecopsychologists, have decided to interweave parts of ecology into their regular, science-based practices. Many science-based practitioners agree that practicing Eco therapy, and harmonizing with nature’s Earth systems, can bring forth more mental health benefits.

More About Ecotherapy

Ecotherapy is primarily based off the concept that human beings are connected to, and impacted by, means of one’s own natural environment. Researchers have heighted that connecting with nature produces beneficial and surprising results. In one research study performed by a psychologist known as Terry Hartig, those participating were asked to finish a 45-minute cognitive test that showed mental fatigue.

Feng Shui

They had to either stroll through some natural terrain, walk through a busy city, or sit quietly and look at magazines. Those who walked through some type of nature path had less anger and more positive emotions than those who did the other activities. Another research study noticed that those who took a nature walk experienced seventy-one percent (71%) less depression in comparison to those who walked around a shopping mall.

Additional Benefits

The beneficial effects of nature don’t’ just come from visual effects, but the beneficial effects occur through other senses as well. It was seen in studies that people who listen to nature sounds, like birds chirping or a calming waterfall, had less mental strain than they did with listening to a track that played highway sounds. Scents that were based on fruits results in less depressive feelings in humans. Direct touch is important as well when it comes to nature therapy.

Mountains

One doesn’t necessarily have to be surrounded by greenery to reap the benefits of nature for mental health. Just having a picture of image of something relaxing or calming, such as the beach or an image of a mountain in Montana or a green-fused scene from the jungle, can have an overwhelming calming effect. It was seen in some studies that individuals who had a relaxing image at their desks or offices had more job productivity and improved mental health than those who did not incorporate this kind of view into their work lives.