The Dan Leigh Show 004: The Importance of Nature for Mental Health

In the time since I released my book Tame Your Anxiety to the public, I have been a bit surprised by the feedback in one particular way. I have received compliments on the chapters on breathing, mindfulness, diet, and challenging your fears. However, I haven’t received any feedback about my chapter on nature. Nature has been one of the most important parts of my own ongoing recover from OCD, and for me it might just be the most important part.

Unfortunately, our modern culture divorces us from nature as soon as we are born. A few of us are lucky enough to have parents who fully appreciate nature, but most of us do not have that sort of upbringing. We live in houses with neatly manicured yards, and out idea of “getting out in nature” is a visit to a park with two acres of green space and a couple of trees…right in the middle of the city!

That was my upbringing as well, and I did not start to seek out “real nature” until I was in my late 20’s. By then, OCD and anxiety had already ravaged me quite a bit. I really believe I would have had much less OCD if I had spent more time in nature during my teens and early 20’s.

In this episode, I tell you all about my experience with “getting back” to nature and how it has helped me in my journey to a less anxious life.


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Dan Leigh