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Chew On This: Mental Health & Green Space

Image by Iván Tamás from Pixabay

The pandemic has confirmed, what most of us already knew, our social, human, economic and political systems are failing us. That’s why we created Chew On This. A friendly and informal conversation thought starter to ask and engage with people who are on a journey to lead the possible rather than manage the probable. Each Chew On This is meant to inspire a shift in how we think about the world so that we can transform what we do, including our failures, into opportunities. Let’s get started…

While the pandemic has revealed many of our system failures, it is presenting many opportunities too. To make system changes we so desperately need.

Unlearning Tip…If you are not failing often, you are not on the right track. We still see leaders are not comfortable with ‘failure’. They haven’t shifted their mindset from thinking failures bad and we shouldn’t do it. To how might we unlearn from it and build from there.

One failure, covid19 has revealed, is the challenge to practice physical distancing. Public Health recommends we keep a minimum of 2 metres apart to protect each other and stop the spread of the virus. In a high-density concrete jungle (our cities) that is difficult to do if not impossible.

Add to this living in lockdowns and 4-months of a dark and cold winter and we have never appreciated more the outdoors and being in nature. Having access to some green space. The inspiration and joy garnered from seeing buds on trees and daffodils sprouting. The boost it gives our mental health especially.

Getting a break from working remotely, disconnected from physical interaction with colleagues and staring at 2” by 2” faces on a Zoom platform and screen, green space accessibility is a lifeline to sanity.

In this extremely well written and insightful article – Green spaces aren’t just for nature – they boost our mental health too – it explores the evolution of urban living. How improvement is needed for social, human, and economic sustainability.

Even though our species has been around for at least 30,000 years.

Did you know the oldest cities are only some 6,000 years old?

In the article psychologists and ecologists, studying the effects of nature on people’s mental health and well-being, share deep insights. For instance, did you know…

  • By 2050, it is projected and suggested that almost 70% of us will be urban dwellers?

  • If we understand better how to green urban spaces, it can help restore social inequality and be an advantage for the biodiversity we all depend on?

  • If urban greening were an investment priority, it would not take much to have a big impact, with the most disadvantaged benefiting the most?

Let’s not waste this pandemic. Let’s use it to move from managing the probable to leading the possible. Let’s build an ideal green city of tomorrow today. You in??


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