Managing Your Wellness II

It is time for another installment of managing your wellness editorial.  This week I am going to review how in 5 minutes you can improve your overall mood. Every cubicle-locked employee prays for a few minutes outside on a beautiful day. How many times have you been so swamped at work that you have just skipped your lunch or just ate at your desk and never stepped out of your office.

The next time you’re looking for a natural mood elevator, turn to nature itself. Research published last year in the journal Environmental Science & Technology confirms what anyone who’s experienced a sunny-day high already knows: Nature is almost foolproof at boosting your mood and self-esteem. And, amazingly, it only takes five minutes.

What it means: “For 300,000 generations, humans were hunter-gatherers and farmers,” says Pretty. “Yet for the last six to eight generations, we have been living in an increasingly industrialized world. The disconnection from nature is deeply felt.” Which is why a mere five minutes of nature can have such a profound impact, he says. “That small amount of time makes more sense when you see it in the context of where people are coming from—stepping outside from a stressful day, for example,” he says. In many cases, the effect can be almost immediate; your mood lifts as if by magic.

So grab your walking shoes—not a cup of coffee.

As this study showed, it doesn’t take much time to boost your mood. When the day starts to wear on you and you need a break—or even before this happens!—head outside and walk around your office building for five minutes rather than trudging to the cafeteria for a coffee or snack.

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