Sowing the seeds of serenity
Dive in the shed and pull out the spade, investing in your garden is investing in yourself. Spend a little time here and it'll be more than just your plants that grow. The compassion you put in, you'll get back out and your self-esteem will receive a boost.
The physical energy exerted in tending to our plots benefits our bodies in many ways: Gardening is actually considered a moderate intensity exercise, helping us to burn calories; even 30 minutes a day participating in a moderate-level activity lowers blood pressure, which can reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. It also requires us to use all major muscle groups important for toning, coordination and balance. It can also reduce childhood obesity and keep our waistlines healthy as we get older. The time spent in the sun also means that we make vitamin D which is needed to keep our bones strong and boost our immune system, so grab the rake and gather the fallen leaves.
Grow your own
Benefits of the process: Gardening is great if you need a little me time and has been found to reduce the symptoms of anxiety and depression. It enables us to be in the moment, yet also plan for the future, practice patience and feel a great sense of satisfaction when we see our efforts rewarded.
If "me time" is hard to get however, why not make it a sociable activity? Get the family involved to teach your children lots of valuable skills (patience, nurture, where their food comes from, how plants grow, which plants are toxic and how plants benefit nature to name a few). Alternatively, get involved with community projects, allotments or team up with neighbours.
Reap the rewards: A balanced diet will have a positive effect on our bodies and therefore our minds. We put good things in, we'll get good things out. The fresh and plentiful supply of healthy produce throughout the year encourages us to reach the recommended 5-a-day. This can reduce cholesterol and the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular related heath issues. Children are also more likely to try a wider range of fruits and vegetables if they have been involved in the growing process.
Financial Growth: Did you ever consider gardening as a financial investment too? Save money on food by growing your own. To save the most cash, grow vegetables that are expensive to buy and vegetables that you can easily store or preserve by canning, freezing, dehydrating, or pickling.
There are many aspects of the garden and gardening, that create a soothing feeling. For more information on how you might awaken your senses, follow this link for some inspiration and get some dirt under your fingernails: