Everyone knows that time spent outdoors can work wonders for one’s physical and emotional well-being. And of course, we all love to lather up for a day at the beach. But what you may not know, is that new findings suggest that spending time in the sea and sun actually affects your brain in an almost hypnotic way.
Scientists have found certain traits in people who spend more time at the beach, and have given a name to the wonderful feeling of peace and calm people describe when visiting the beach. The “blue space,” as it’s referred to, is the combined effect of soothing smells and sounds found at the beach in putting your brain at ease.
So, those feelings of peace and serenity found at the beach are now backed by science. Research says that spending time at the beach changes the way our brains react to environmental influences, giving us feelings of happiness and rejuvenation. In fact, the “blue space” can affect your emotional health for the better in four different ways.
1. Stress reduction
The first benefit shouldn’t be too surprising - going to the beach reduces stress. Anyone who’s spent time sitting on the shoreline will know that water is a powerful natural healer. This is because it’s full of naturally occurring negative ions that are known to calm you down and promote feelings of peace. Electronic devices are well-known for their release of positive ions, so spending time away from them and in the water is essential for relaxation.
2. Improved creativity
If you’re stuck on a problem or in a creative rut, the beach can help. Spending any amount of time in the “blue space” has been shown to help clear your head and improve abstract thinking. This will let you approach projects or problems more creatively. Just like meditation, spending more time at the beach will help keep your mind in the present and promote general feelings of serenity.
3. Reduced feeling of depression
Thanks to this meditative state, visiting the beach can also provide some relief to feelings of depression. The smells and sounds of the sea promote feelings of calmness and relaxation, giving you a safe space to better deal with anxiety and the general chaos of daily life.
4. New perspective on life
Overall, spending time at the beach will change your perspective on life for the better. Nature has always played a part in our health and happiness, but the beach, in particular, has incredible benefits for the soul. It lets you slow down, appreciate the now, and helps you deal with depression and the anxieties of the everyday.