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Mental Health Wellness: Surround Yourself with Nature

Posted by Carmen Chu on

Have you ever wondered why it is so easy, especially toward the end of the day, to simply gaze out a window and watch the sun set, or get distracted by beautiful scenery? Well… in this post, I would like to introduce you to Attention Restoration Theory: a theory that suggests that our brains (psychologically, physiologically and emotionally) can recharge and rest when simply looking at nature.


Nature has, for the longest of times, been a source of energy. In the 1980s and 1990s, mankind saw a drastic increase of indoor activities, which made psychologists question the necessity (if any) of spending time outside. Stephen and Rachel Kaplan developed Attention Restoration Theory – proving that nature can not only help us replenish mental energy but can also help us feel, holistically, better.


Environmental psychology being a hot topic of the 90s, controlled studies by Hartig, Mang & Evans (1991) were conducted on groups of people asked to take a 40 minute walk in an urban setting versus taking a walk in a natural environment. The third group was asked to listen to relaxing music for 40 minutes. With a high attention test after the 40 minutes waiting for them, those in the natural environment outperformed the other two groups – and also claimed to be the most ‘restored’.



While we may not all have access to complete wilderness from our offices or even homes, a kay taking from this post is that we can all choose to, at some point, spend a bit of time reconnecting to nature. Whether this means a walk in a park, or just to look out our window for a few minutes a day, let’s not forget to be kind to ourselves and ‘restore’ through the power of nature.


About Christine: 

Christine is a Hong Kong-based designer and haute couture embroiderer, with over six years of experience in planning, styling and decorating weddings. With a background in fashion design, she weaves details into interiors and aims to create one of a kind experiences for her clients. Brought up in Hong Kong, she is also passionate about all things eight five two: the outdoors, different cultures and, of course, learning how to take some time out in this intense city we all call our home.

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