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Reconnecting with nature

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Reconnect with nature

This year Mental Health Awareness Week will run from Monday 10th to Sunday 16th May and the theme for this year’s campaign is ‘Reconnecting with nature’.  During the pandemic many people explored green spaces they were not previously aware of and lots of people found solace in spending time in nature over what has been a very difficult 12 months.  This is why the Mental Health Foundation decided that it was only fitting for the theme of this year’s campaign to be about enjoying the benefits of spending time in nature.

Reconnecting with nature in Merton

There are various ways in which you get out and about into Merton’s green spaces and make the most of being outside this spring and summer after having to spend so many days at home during lockdown:

  • Local Parks – Merton has many parks and open spaces across the borough to help you with reconnecting to nature. Find your nearest park
  • Sustainable MertonSustainable Merton have lots of activities across Merton which you can join in with to contribute towards looking after Merton’s green spaces. A great way of reconnecting with nature.

 The 5 Ways to Wellbeing

As well as encouraging people to reconnect with nature Mental Health UK is also encouraging people to immerse themselves in the 5 Ways to Wellbeing for Mental Health Awareness Week.  The 5 Ways to Wellbeing are:

  • Connect – making time to speak to the people in your life and also make new connections.
  • Be Active – regular physical activity of any kind is connected with a boost in mood as feel good hormones are released when you choose to get active. Visit our ‘Moving’ page for ideas
  • Take Notice – this means being present to the world around us and mindful of how we are feeling and what we are doing. It can also be helpful to take stock at the end of each day to help us prepare for the next day.
  • Keep Learning – Learning new skills is good for your brain and can feel very rewarding. This could be as simple as taking on extra responsibilities at work or could be rediscovering an old hobby or exploring a new one.
  • Give – Giving can mean giving time, for example volunteering with local organisations, but it can also mean just helping a neighbour or checking in on someone to make sure they are OK. Many people enjoy giving their time to support others because of the feeling of wellbeing this gives them knowing they have helped other people.

Every Mind Matters

Visit our Every Mind Matters page to get your very own ‘Mind Plan’ which provides simple steps you can take to look after your mental wellbeing.

You can also find some very helpful advice by visiting the NHS Every Mind Matters page.

Mental Health and wellbeing support in Merton

The last 12 months have been difficult for everyone, but especially difficult for some people and this is why mental health services are now very much in demand.

If you feel that you or someone close to you would benefit from support with their mental wellbeing then contact the Merton Uplift service.  Merton Uplift can help anyone aged 18 and over with mental health issues such as stress, anxiety, low mood, and depression.

Also, young people aged 11 to 25 can get free, independent, professional counselling from an organisation called Off the Record.  Off The Record has lots of services such as online support, a Saturday helpline as well as support for parents and carers.