Have you ever heard someone say that they love running not just because of how it makes their body feel, but also their mind? Over 55 million people in the U.S. run or jog recreationally, and for good reason. Most of us know that running offers a host of physical benefits, including improved cardiovascular health… read more
The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s classic 20th century novel, tells the story of Mary Lennox, a girl relocated to England following the deaths of her parents. As she copes with her grief, she also faces ill health, loneliness and a slew of additional concerns that we now would recognize as major stressors. As you… read more
Nature’s Health Benefits It is widely accepted that time spent outdoors has both physical and psychological benefits. Yet, the average person spends nearly 87% of their time indoors and 7% of their time in vehicles. Put another way, most of us spend less than 5 hours per week in natural environments. This is a shame;… read more
Global warming, violent crimes, discrimination…the news we’re presented with daily can be disturbing. It’s no surprise, then, that more than half of all US citizens report that the news causes them stress, citing symptoms such as sleep loss, anxiety, and overall fatigue.
In fact, research indicates that watching the news not only affects our mood, making us sad or anxious, it can also exacerbate physical ailments by increasing the amount of stress hormones in our bodies.
Sleep and Anxiety How Anxiety Contributes to Sleep Problems We all have our poor sleep horror stories; that night before a presentation when our minds were racing too quickly to let us nod off, or the time we went to a party we’d been anticipating for weeks, only to find ourselves too exhausted to enjoy… read more
In a day and age when technology reigns and face-to-face interactions have fallen by the wayside, spending time outside has lost some of its appeal. Despite this, outdoor activity can play a major role in gaining and maintaining mental health. By building communities with your fellow outdoorspeople, increasing your psychological resilience, and just plain enjoying… read more
Each year, millions of people are forced to cope with the physical and psychological effects of chronic pain. Viva therapist Regina Tosca, LICSW, knows this well—with her background in palliative care and hospital social work, she’s worked with many clients who deal with chronic pain in their daily life. In the following post, Regina breaks… read more
Our physical and psychological health are connected—so much so that issues with our mental health can manifest as bodily pain. Below are a few common physical symptoms of anxiety, depression, and other psychological conditions, as well as suggestions from therapist Sarah Levy, LICSW on how you can treat them. Symptoms of Mental Health Issues Everyday… read more
Our bodies go through myriad changes as we age; in terms of stress, as we grow older, we are both exposed to new physical stressors and begin to handle those stressors in a different way. This post seeks to break down those stress-related changes and provide methods for coping with them. How Our Bodies Respond… read more
Research suggests that simply looking at nature increases cognitive functioning, decreasing omission errors and resulting in more consistent task-responses. So when you’re feeling stuck or distracted, give yourself a microbreak (about 40 seconds) to stare at nature in any form.