“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower” has Alburt Camus put beautifully. Autumn is also the time that is strongly full and busy everyday life for many of us. We may not have a chance to go outdoors to enjoy nature’s colors and relax as often as we would like to. However, what we can do is nature visualization.
Guide yourself to visualize a relaxing nature experience
Studies have shown that visualizing nature scenes and experiences, and even looking at pictures of nature has a calming and mood-lifting effect on us. Watching nature photos can also make us feel more energetic.
Guided imaginary is a technique in which a person focuses on positive images in his or her mind. Guided imaginary can help people to reach a positive physical response (like reduction in stress, anxiety, or pain) and a relaxed, focused state that gives a sense of wellbeing.
Guided imaginary can be done verbally by another person or alone by oneself. Content of the imaginary can be anything, for example relaxing nature experience that you would like to do in concrete, but can’t because of some reason.
Guided imaginary can be done independently but it has also been used a lot in therapeutic settings in psychology. If you are interested, feel free to read for example the results of the study “Nature-Based Guided Imagery as an Intervention for State Anxiety” published at Frontiers in Psychology (US National Library of Medicine – National Institutes of Health)
Most of all, try nature visualizing yourself in your mind!
Add some extra value to your nature visualization
Nature visualization and nature photos have in general the ability to make us feel better. However, if your visualization or photos are related to nature places that are personally dear to you and you have good memories related to them, the positive, relaxing effect can be even deeper.
Meaningfulness brings added value but you can also increase the positive effect by combining some deep breathing and stretching to your experience. Use both your mind, and body!
Another tip is also to save dear nature photo memories to your mobile. Go back to those good moments and nature scenes by watching them for example while having a coffee break at work.
For us, one is our family farm and the nature sceneries around it, that work. The countryside surroundings are naturally beautiful all year round but in autumn there is special magic. The “ruska” autumn colors are just so amazing!
We encourage you to go to nature in autumn to enjoy its colors and see what kind of thoughts and feelings the autumn atmosphere awakens in you.
We also recommend trying nature visualization next time you find yourself stressed in the middle of your everyday life and unable to go outdoors for real. The experience may surprise you positively.
Bringing pieces of nature to your home is always a good idea too. Here’s one tip what you can do with autumn leaves by yourself or with your child.
With love from Saimaa,
Mari & Marianne