The quarantine has led to an explosion of many hobbies: baking, painting, rock climbing, exercising, and one of the most prominent ones: becoming a green thumb. With most of our days spent at home, that meant looking for ways to transform our personal space into a calming, more pleasant one. We’ve heard through most of our lives of the benefits of being outdoors and in a green space, but when it’s technically discouraged to stay outside, why not bring it all inside?
So. are houseplants good for your mental health?
Adding more plants to your space offers tremendous benefits to both your mental and physical health. According to Stoneside’s survey, one of the top reasons for purchasing plants since the pandemic began was to uplift their spaces (65 percent), with 54 percent stating that they wanted “to have something else to focus on” amidst the turmoil of the global health crisis. Additionally, 55 percent of the participants noted that they sometimes or regularly talked to their plants. Here are some of the many ways houseplants can do wonders for your mental health:
5 Ways Houseplants are Great for Your Mental Health
1. They Bring the Outside In
We all know that spending time outdoors is good for your health. However, when it’s too cold or risky to venture outside, the next best option is to recreate your surroundings by adding indoor house plants to your personal space. It’s a great way to enjoy the therapeutic effects of nature that will lower your stress levels, decrease blood pressure, and help you relax more.
2. It’s a Kind of Self-Care
The global health crisis may be known as a physical one, but it also has significant adverse effects on everyone’s mental health. However, the simple act of watering your plants and giving them plant food gives you a straightforward routine that’s easy to stick to, giving you something predictable in a world of turbulence and uncertainty.
Sometimes, it can be hard to care for yourself—go outside, get some sunlight and fresh air, and feed yourself. However, caring for a plant and giving it enough water and sunlight will help you establish consistent habits that nourish yourself. It then creates a positive feedback loop where you’re taking responsibility for another life—your plant—and you start seeing the fruits of your labor as your plant starts flourishing. It is tangible evidence of what happens when you are consistent, do what’s necessary, and adapt to your environment to survive.
3. Plants Stimulate Your Creativity
Home is where the heart is, but it sure can get dull when you’re surrounded by the same four walls every day. The good news is that plants can give you a much-needed boost of creativity, as indoor plants have been proven to improve cognitive function and out-of-the-box thinking. According to a Texas A&M study, having indoor plants in the workplace vastly improved creative problem-solving, concentration, and idea generation. Having a few easy house plants around you can help you find the motivation you need to perform at your best.
4. They Can Boost Your Productivity
Time can start feeling loopy when you’ve spent months hunkering down at home, making it almost impossible to find the willpower to focus. Luckily, houseplants can give you that extra boost in energy and productivity. According to a 2014 study in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, researchers found that having plants in the workplace resulted in more productivity, positive perceptions of air quality, and boosted concentration levels. They also observed workplace satisfaction and objective measures of productivity shoot up.
5. Houseplants Just Help You Feel Better
Lastly, plants can help you feel less anxious and enhance feelings of joy and contentment. Being exposed to indoor plants decreases the activity of our sympathetic nervous system, which controls our flight-or-fight response. Indoor plants naturally encourage a sense of comfort, relaxation, and tranquility, and touching them induces the same calm effects as spending time in a forest.
While it may be more difficult now to spend most of your time outdoors, bringing the outside in through small houseplants is a great way to take care of your health while beautifying your space. By investing in houseplants, you’ll feel better both physically and mentally.
Houseplant Advisor is a houseplant advisor that gives you the best home plant tips and how-to guides. Whether you’re brand new to caring for indoor plants or you’re hoping to expand your mini greenhouse, we’ve got you covered. Check out our other guides today!