Our modern lifestyles don’t offer us many ways to spend time outside naturally. Make a conscious effort this spring to get outdoors to enjoy the beauty this season offers. Spending time outside supports the health and well-being of every person. For those in recovery, the advantages of time outdoors bring an even more profound beneficial impact. Although time outside cannot cure addiction independently, it builds upon the healthy lifestyle that recovery encourages and provides a space for healing and connection. Here are some ways spending time outside promotes your recovery.
Serotonin and Vitamin D Boost
Unlike the dark, cold winter months, being outside in the spring lends to direct sun exposure, giving your body an extra boost of serotonin and vitamin D. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays a vital role in elevating your mood, energy levels, and cognitive function. With increased Vitamin D intake from the sun, you will benefit from a healthier immune system and higher energy levels. Serotonin and Vitamin D work together to strengthen and revitalize your body and mind to decrease vulnerability for relapse.
Interrupts Old Patterns of Everyday Life
One of the most beautiful things about time in nature is that it removes you from the patterns of everyday life and puts you in the present moment. Whether immersed in a rich forest of trees or surfing in the ocean, you naturally feel more distanced from worldly temptations or old patterns of behavior. By spending more time in nature, you reduce your chances of boredom and idle time that may turn your attention back to old vices.
Depending on how far along you are in your recovery, you may not yet have a good stress management solution to replace the use of drugs and alcohol to deal with stressors. Being outside in nature is a proven way to lower your cortisol levels and destress. You can go even further to maximize the benefit of stress reduction by going outdoors to exercise.
Enjoy Well-Regulated Sleep Habits
Your sleep may have paid a considerable price for your addiction, as it’s common to have highly irregular sleep patterns when battling an addiction. Not to mention, insomnia is a common withdrawal symptom during the early stages of recovery. Poor sleep patterns can be managed and helped by time outside. Being exposed to the sun resets your natural circadian rhythm, allowing for sounder, more regular sleep cycles.
This spring, decide to incorporate outside time in your daily schedule, and your mind and body will thank you later. Just by spending more time outside, you can enjoy an improved mood, a greater functioning immune system, better sleep, and less stress, all helping reduce your vulnerability to relapse. At Avalon Malibu, we invite clients to experience tailored treatment programs at our state-of-the-art facilities overlooking the ocean. We at Avalon hold to a standard of care that offers our clients the well-rounded support they need through our evidence-based mental health therapies and concurring effective addiction treatments. To find out how you can find life-long recovery in the beautiful setting of Southern California, call us at (844) 857-5992.