Decrease Stress, Increase Positivity and Unwind - Why You Should Be Camping This Summer
There’s something special about feeling the warmth of the sun, hearing the wind rustle among the leaves and walking barefoot in the grass; studies have shown that it’s not just nice, but key to a healthy life and positive mind.
In their 2019 ‘State of Industry’ report, the Caravan Industry Association of Australia (CIAA) reported an increase in domestic campers despite economic pressures that people may be facing. 2018 alone generated the largest number of caravanning and camping visitors in history, of which the majority were domestic campers who were staying in regional locations outside of cities. If you’re wondering why there’s such a surge in camping, CIAA’s ‘Real Richness’ report from 2017 provides some insight into why so many people are choosing the wilderness over urban destinations.
The report drew on 1,000 regular campers and 1,000 non-campers who answered a series of self-evaluation question. Their answers contained some powerful findings. Overall, campers rated higher levels of happiness, energy, satisfaction, optimism, family connectedness and appreciation for nature compared to non-campers. And reported lower levels of stress, boredom, frustration and loneliness. For example, only 3% of campers felt lonely, as opposed to 15% of non-campers.
There’s no surprise that regular campers are feeling so good. A 2012 article published in Annals of New York Academy of Sciences explored the impacts of nature on human cognition and mental health. It was found that something as simple as seeing nature from a window had the power to improve life and work satisfaction; so being in nature itself has some powerful effects.
The article touched on studies which found that nature decreases stress, and increases positivity, memory and direct attention. Even being present in a forest for 15 minutes was found to significantly reduce stress levels in people as opposed to those in urban areas.
So, it’s set, this summer the best thing you can do to ease yourself into the rush of the new year is to pack your camping gear and immerse yourself in some greenery. Let yourself unwind and feel connected to your family and friends, while nature washes away the stresses of life and brings you back to a calm, positive mindset.