5 psychological benefits of going green in 2023

By HarperLees

Climate change has never been far from the headlines in 2023, with global emissions and rising temperatures blamed for the devastating wildfires and other natural disasters in Hawaii, Canada, Greece, and Turkey.

However, individuals across the globe aren’t just sitting back and putting their heads in the sand. Indeed, whether it’s making small lifestyle changes like cycling to work and recycling household items more regularly or larger transformations like reducing meat intake and growing your own vegetables, you’re likely attempting to go green to benefit the natural world.

So, if you’ve been looking at what you can do to help the environment, you’re not alone. A May 2023 report by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed that 64% of UK adults were worried about climate change.

What you may not realise, however, is that going green and reducing your environmental impact can also bring positive emotional advantages. So, read on to find out five psychological benefits of doing so in 2023.

1. You’ll feel great about yourself

While cycling instead of driving may take more time and physical effort, this kind of environmentally sustainable change can also have a positive effect on your wellbeing.

Indeed, various studies have shown that sustainable actions elicit positive emotions. They can leave you with a “warm glow”, making you feel good about yourself. Ultimately, doing good is intrinsically rewarding.

2. You’ll have a sense of purpose

In addition to the positive emotions often triggered by going green and having a deeper connection with nature, sustainable actions could also give you a real sense of purpose.

By embracing a green, eco-friendly lifestyle you could help educate others, like your children or grandchildren, on the need for environmentally friendly behaviour. Doing so will not only raise awareness but also help you feel more rewarded and empowered.

Moreover, having a real sense of purpose has been found to reduce stress and increase longevity. Indeed, a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association revealed that individuals with a stronger purpose in life had lower all-cause mortality.

3. Going green teaches you to be mindful

Environmentally conscious people are often more likely to practice minimalism, meaning they will be more mindful about what they consume, want, and use.

This idea of sustainable living could help you become more mindful of your everyday activities and your environmental impact. When you commit to eco-friendly practices like taking shorter showers, using public transportation, or reducing your use of single-use plastics, you’ll be more likely to focus on being mindful of every action you take.

Recycling more, spending less, and spreading awareness about climate change could also help put things into perspective and make it easier for you to sort out your priorities.

Indeed, living more mindfully and being aware of your consumption patterns means you can reduce your carbon footprint and save money on unnecessary purchases too.

4. A reduced risk of neurotic or stress-related disorders

A study by the University of Aarhus in Denmark revealed that children who have high exposure to green spaces are more adjusted to sustainable living and less likely to develop psychiatric disorders.

Indeed, the study revealed that children who grow up without green surroundings have up to a 55% higher risk of developing mental disorders later in life.

It’s not only children who can benefit, either. Adults who adopt a sustainable lifestyle have found they have better stress management capabilities and can concentrate on the tasks they’re performing.

So, conditioning your home environment to be eco-friendly and teaching children to care for nature could enhance your entire family’s emotional wellbeing and reduce the risk of developing mental health issues.

5. Joining sustainable communities boosts mental wellness

Being part of a group or a community that is passionate about helping the environment can inspire you to creatively work towards change and implement habits that teach you gratitude and mindfulness.

In addition, knowing that you are part of a movement that is focused on lasting change can give you a real sense of belonging and pride. Often, people who enjoy being part of eco-friendly communities have a greater desire to help others and experience a stronger bond with nature.

Indeed, a report by the Australian and New Zealand Mental Health Association revealed that belonging to an eco-conscious community decreases the chances of depression, lowers stress levels, and induces a sense of togetherness and support among members.

Get in touch

While there are many psychological benefits of going green, financial planning can also have emotional and mental wellbeing advantages.

So, if you want professionals in your corner for all your financial decision-making, please email info@harperlees.co.uk or call 01277 350560.

Please note

This blog is for general information only and does not constitute advice. The information is aimed at retail clients only.