Outdoor Summer Activities to Improve Your Mental Health
Incorporating physical activity into your daily routine is vital in keeping your body strong and healthy. However, moving around and working up a sweat is just as important for your mental health, especially following the cold winter months. As the weather continues to improve and there are more opportunities to get outside, it’s finally the perfect time to do some outdoor activities that are great for both your mental and physical health.
It’s no surprise that the outdoors contributes to elevated moods and reconnection with nature can improve your quality of life. That fresh air and sunshine are the perfect remedy for the winter blues, but not everyone is as inclined for physical activity as others are. If you struggle finding enjoyable activities that you can maintain in your daily routine all summer long, below are a few ideas that’ll help you get your body moving while also improving your mental health.
If you enjoy moving your body, but aren’t as interested in fast-paced and strenuous activity, then yoga might just be the best option for you. Not only does this slow, meditative activity give you time to reflect on your thoughts and emotions as you cycle through various stretches and positions, but it can also be easily done anywhere, even outside. Whether you like to practice yoga on your own for the full meditative experience, or with a buddy, grabbing your mat and spending a few hours under a shady tree is a great way to elevate your mood and improve your flexibility.
This might just be the activity we all look forward to when summer finally rears its head. While the pandemic has made it harder for many of us to get to a pool, taking any opportunity you can to have a dip in some refreshing water can do wonders for your mental health. Swimming has been shown to help reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression and is also a great activity for anyone who can’t do strenuous activity. Swimming allows you to work your muscles, lungs, and heart without putting too much weight on your bones. Anyone recovering from an injury can attest to how useful swimming is for getting in shape without causing any additional pain.
- Having a picnic
For those who just aren’t fans of physical exercise there are still ways to get out in nature and help you feel a little bit better. Setting up a picnic with your family, close friends, or even alone is a simple, yet effective way to immerse yourself in nature and enjoy the sunshine. Top this casual and relaxing day off with some of your favourite foods and a refreshing Passion Fruit and Orange iced tea from Oteas to make it even more enjoyable. There’s really no better way to recharge and boost your mood than breathing in some fresh air on a warm summer’s day.
- Going for a hike
For those who love spending a few hours working up a sweat, embarking on a hike is the activity for you. The pace and intensity of the hike is completely up to you and your comfort level, but this activity is the perfect way to get those lungs working and getting that boost of dopamine with every kilometer hit.
Not only are hikes great for getting physical exercise, but they also allow you to explore a new area and provide the perfect backdrop for some mindful meditation. Do you have some decisions you’re trying to mull over? Taking a long hike on your own with nothing but nature to keep you company can help clear your mind and get you to a resolution without the added stress.
- Arts and Crafts
As mentioned above, not everyone enjoys strenuous physical exercise or even any exercise at all. That’s completely okay because there are a variety of other ways to enjoy the outdoors while still doing an activity. Whether you’re an artist yourself or have kids that love to get creative, consider taking your projects outside. Painters, writers, and even musicians can enjoy the mental health benefits of spending time outdoors while still practicing and improving in their craft. Pair this with your favourite snacks and some much-needed sunscreen and you’ll be able to spend some time outside of your regular creative space to enjoy the summer before it’s gone.
Winter can take a mental and physical toll on many of us, which is why it’s important to make the most of the summer and spend some time outdoors. If you find yourself struggling with low energy or have symptoms of anxiety and depression, then reconnecting with nature is a great place to start in your mental health journey.
For that added boost of healing while you’re reconnecting with nature, try some of Oteas loose leaf teas today. They can be enjoyed hot or cold so that you can take them anywhere you go!