The relationship between nature relatedness and anxiety

J Health Psychol. 2016 Jul;21(7):1436-45. doi: 10.1177/1359105314555169. Epub 2014 Nov 4.

Abstract

This study investigated the relationship between anxiety and feelings of being connected to nature. Two standardised self-report scales, the Nature Relatedness Scale and the State Trait Inventory for Cognitive and Somatic Anxiety, were used in tandem with a qualitative question. Quantitative results indicated that connection to nature was significantly related to lower levels of overall, state cognitive and trait cognitive anxiety. Qualitative results revealed seven themes: relaxation, time out, enjoyment, connection, expanse, sensory engagement and a healthy perspective. Taken together, these results suggest that opportunities that enhance experiences of being connected to nature may reduce unhelpful anxiety.

Keywords: anxiety; connection to nature; nature relatedness; well-being.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anxiety / diagnosis
  • Anxiety / psychology*
  • Cognition
  • Environment*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Health
  • Middle Aged
  • Nature*
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychological Tests
  • Qualitative Research
  • Self Concept*
  • Young Adult