We all know that getting out and connecting with nature is generally a sure fire way to feel good. And there’s more to this than just enjoying being in beautiful spaces.
Biophilia is the term used to describe the positive connection between humans and nature, and more and more research shows that there is a direct link between contact with nature and wellness. In fact, being surrounded by natural elements can help relieve stress, improve mental wellbeing, increase productivity and creativity, increase your life expectancy, and generally make you feel happier and healthier.
This is why the AVA Communities lifestyle living villages at Geelong and Yarrawonga have been designed to allow easy access to nature, and encourage a healthy over 50s lifestyle.
Many factors of modern life mean people tend to spend less time in nature, but connecting with nature doesn’t necessarily have to mean heading outdoors. By incorporating more elements of biophilia into your day, you can reap exactly the same wellness benefits. And given the home is where you spend the most of your time, adding elements of biophilia to the place you live is one of the fastest ways to do just that.
Here are some ways to incorporate biophilia into your home:
Bring the outdoors in
Start by adding elements usually found in your natural surroundings and bringing them into your home. Fresh flowers look and smell great, but are also proven to make you happier. Indoor plants are not only a beautiful way to decorate, but they can be exceptionally beneficial to your health. They improve air quality, and help absorb volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which can be emitted from household products and furnishings and can be toxic.
Incorporate natural patterns, imagery, smells and sounds
When it comes to your interiors, there are plenty of clever ways to incorporate biophilia. Natural materials such as timber, stone and natural fibres can all bring in elements of nature to your home. You could also add artworks or wallpaper showing beautiful natural panoramas or patterns, or use furniture with patterns which imitate nature, such as leaves. Scents can work too. Open a window to let in the natural breeze, or a candle or room sprays using natural scents can have a positive effect. And think about what you can hear. Whether it’s the breeze rustling through the trees, or the chirp of nearby birds or insects, natural sounds can also reduce stress. Fill your garden with plants that attract an array of animals and creatures to your garden to help fill your home with nature’s soundtrack.
Let there be light
If you spend too long indoors under artificial light, it can negatively affect your health and your mood, so it’s important to make sure you get enough exposure to sunlight during the day to increase wellness. Open your blinds and curtains to let the natural light in, or take the time to enjoy some sunshine in your backyard or on a daily walk around the local neighbourhood.
Live close to water
If you ask someone to conjure up an image of the most relaxing place, for many people, it will be somewhere near water. In fact our bodies are programmed to seek it out, and it’s proven that even just being near water can improve your mood. The AVA Communities lifestyle villages in Geelong and Yarrawonga are situated close to water, so you can make a visit part of your regular routine. For something a little closer to home, why not add a water feature to your backyard? The sounds of the flowing water, plus the bird life it’s likely to attract, are added bonus doses of biophilia.
Looking for over 50s lifestyle living? The AVA Communities lifestyle villages at Geelong and Yarrawonga are designed to support over 50s wellness. Click here to find out more.