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There is something about gardening, where even small amounts of effort, bring noticeable improvements. So when your mind is in a place, where you feel a failure in your life, a spell in the garden seems to provide evidence to the contrary.
Great thread! As a panic attack / anxiety attack sufferer (though thankfully, largely under control right now), I've found that there is nothing more effective at lifting my spirits than spending time outside in the garden. And until quite recently I'd never had called myself an outdoor girl (perhaps though that's not living anywhere where I've had an oustide). And sometimes I don't even do anything. I simply take my cup of tea, and my cigarette outside, sit on the bench, watch and listen. Nothing more. I'm lucky that I live in a rural area I know but the sound of bird song, priceless. I also find that on days when I'm really struggling to get through, and so tired I could drop, that forcing myself outside and getting on with something, somehow, without fail, picks me up. If only they could write all of that on a prescription.....
Some lovely observations on this thread.
Gardening is all about patience but you can still see the smallest hint of progress each day. You've just got to look for it and enjoy it, however small it may be.
Personally I find that looking after my (small) garden is a great way of talking to the neighbours too. 3 houses surround mine and, with the exception of a hard winter, i'm in the garden talking to the neighbours most days. Human interaction is essential to good mental health and my garden helps me to interact with the people on my doorstep.
This thread brought a lump to my throat and I can especially relate to you Louise. I had my own horse for years, he was my escape from the stresses of the world and my non judge mental friend. Now he is gone after a dreadful accident and I decided not to get another due to rising costs and the commitment etc (although I now exercise a friends horse at weekends). My garden has become more important to me than ever, and has never had so much time lavished on it, it was a bit neglected ! My hubby always says I look happier when I have been digging around in the dirt or potting up plants, and its also given so much pleasure to our elderly parents.
bless you Gina, my old horse went to the big pasture in the sky just overe a year ago..aged 31!! i so wish my children could have met him, i'm trying to get my parents interested, dad not bothered at all, but likes to look at and especially to smell my garden