7 ways nature can boost your wellbeing this spring

Ahead of her appearance at RHS Malvern Spring Festival, SoGlos chats to TV presenter Kate Humble about the wonderful ways Gloucestershire's beautiful countryside can put a spring in your step as we wave goodbye to winter.

By Emma Luther  |  Published
Kate Humble is appearing at RHS Malvern Spring Festival on Sunday 12 May 2024.

Is there a season more eagerly anticipated and longed for than spring? After the long dark days of winter, it is a time of renewal and new beginnings.  

Nothing makes us more aware of this than being outside, witnessing all that nature is up to at this exciting and invigorating time of year. And nothing makes us feel better.  

After spending so many years in the great outdoors celebrating country life, SoGlos quizzes Kate Humble to get her tips on some uplifting ways that nature can help us feel renewed and invigorated as we head towards spring and her appearance at RHS Malvern Spring Festival on Sunday 12 May 2024 in The Kitchen Garden Theatre.

Spend half an hour with nature

Leave your phone indoors and out of earshot, make a cup of tea and go and sit in your garden for half an hour. Just sit in your favourite spot, on the ground, on a chair, it doesn’t matter, wherever you feel comfortable. And just look and listen.

Watch the birds come and go. Enjoy the insects. Enjoy the light on the leaves and flowers, the shifting shadows, the smell of the grass. Allow yourself, just for this short time, to feel really part of your garden and embrace relaxation. 

Find a bluebell wood

We are so lucky in this country to have access to some really beautiful woodland and the wonder of being amongst a sea of bluebells in the spring never dims, however often you have seen them.

Discover some of the best spots in the SoGlos 11 of the best places to see bluebells in Gloucestershire hot list spanning Stroud to the Forest of Dean, Gloucester and across the stunning Cotswolds.

Get up before the sun and the birds

The dawn chorus rivals any human choir and is at its best in spring. Many local wildlife trusts and nature reserves offer dawn chorus walks.

It’s not just about seeing a spectacular sunrise — although that is always a bonus too — but to watch the light return to the sky and listen to the ever-increasing chorus of birdsong celebrating a new day is about as uplifting an experience as you can have.

Embrace natural swimming

So-called ‘wild swimming’ has become something of a ‘thing’ in recent times, but don’t let that put you off.  

Swimming in a pond, a river or a lake allows you to feel truly immersed in nature. Be at one with dragonflies and damsel flies and watch skimming swallows, ducks and swans from a whole new perspective. Take advice, join a local group or go with an experienced friend. A swimming pool will never appeal again!

Find foraging gems

Spring is a bountiful season and nature can provide us with many fresh, healthy and delicious ingredients. It’s a wonderful way to walk mindfully, looking at the world differently, noticing things you might otherwise overlook.

Go out with an experienced forager, who will be able to reassure you that what you are picking is edible and tell you about each plant, its uses and benefits.  

Get out for a walk

People have been extolling the virtues of walking in nature for millennia and there really is no better and simpler way to clear your head and feel at peace than to go for a walk. Whether it is a familiar route or a new one, long or short, it doesn’t matter. What’s more important is to think of it as a walking meditation.

Put your phone on silent, or better yet still, leave it behind, and just enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of your surroundings. Notice what flowers are in bloom, how the leaves are unfurling, how colour is coming back into the landscape. Breathe great lungful's of fresh air.

Go stargazing

We Iive on a crowded island, but there are still many places where the night sky is undimmed by light pollution.

Find a local group or just head somewhere you know there will be a clear view of the sky (and on an evening when there aren't as many clouds about!) and enjoy the feeling of being a tiny part of a giant and beautiful universe.

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