Did you know that being in nature can calm your mind, heal your body, and improve your mental functions?
- In a study by Japanese researchers, it was found that walking or staying in a forest (a practice known as forest bathing) decreased hostility and depression significantly while increasing liveliness significantly among participants.
- A University of Michigan study found that short-term memory of test subjects improved by walking in nature, or even just by viewing pictures of nature.
- In a University of Sheffield study, it was found that natural, tranquil scenes (beach) enhanced connectivity between different brain areas, whereas non-tranquil scenes (motorway) disrupted connections within the brain.
- A study revealed that among patients recovering from gallbladder surgery, those assigned to rooms with windows looking out to a natural scene required a shorter stay, needed less pain medication, and had fewer post-surgical complications than those facing a brick wall.
While the best thing to do would be to move to more natural living environments, for many of us this may not be possible due to where we live.
If so, here are some free nature videos for you. These videos are great for relaxing and meditation. Watch them before you sleep and feel calmed instantly. Also great as white noise if you are a busy environment!
One of my favorites, this is an HD video of a gentle waterfall to several soothing music tracks. The music starts off quiet with the sound of a waterfall, followed by nature sounds, and then builds up to a wonderful mix of people humming, tribal music, and upbeat tunes.
2) Sea Waves
Teleport yourself next to a sea now without a plane ticket. No music, only the sound of sea waves and a video of gentle waves and a palm tree swaying. Project this full screen on your TV/laptop and sit back, watch, and relax.
3) Celtic Music
This one made me feel like I was in the Lord of the Rings . This Celtic piece is composed by Peder Helland and contains gentle flute and harp tunes. Its gentle, soothing tune is great for relaxing.
4) Relaxing Piano Music
This gentle piano piece is accompanied by the gentle sound of a water stream. Like Track #3, the video is a collage of different pictures of nature. If you like this, check out this track with a more sweet and romantic vibe.
5) Deep Sleep Music #1
This video is a collage of different clips of nature, from sheep running across a mountain to flowers swaying in the wind to snowy landscapes! Just watching the video is consciousness raising. It reminds us that we are one speck in this universe, that we have a responsibility to care for this Earth, and not to get lost in our problems. I recommend to listen to the music and watch the video at the same time.
6) Deep Sleep Music #2
Great for stress relief. This soft, calming piece is accompanied by a static image of a silhouette staring right up into the sky, creating the feeling like you are the only person in the universe.
Do you like the sound of rain? If so, this track is for you. A 10-hour clip of just rain sounds — play it while on the bed and you should fall asleep enough. 🙂 If you prefer gentler rain sounds, click here.
This video brings you right into the heart of a rainforest with water stream and animal sounds. If you prefer just a track with water stream sounds without animal noises, click here.
9) Harp Music
Charming harp music by Peder Helland. Relax your mind and unwind after a long day.
10) Flying Through Clouds
If you like to see clouds float by when you’re on a plane, this video is for you. This video brings you right to the sky — it’s a 3-hour clip of you floating over white clouds as you fly toward the sunset (or sunrise, depending on how you see it).
Here’s a nighttime version:
If you’re looking for a way to play YouTube in the background while on your phone, check out Stream (Android only) — it’s free. It lets you play a YouTube music video as a small floating popup, after which you can surf the net and check emails on your phone. I use it all the time to multi-task.
Check out my meditation series on the benefits of meditation and how to meditate:
- Part 1: 10 Reasons You Should Meditate
- Part 2: How to Meditate In 5 Easy Steps
- Part 3: Vipassana Meditation 10-Day Course