What Makes Us Happy?

Millions of people the world over sing along to Pharrell Williams’ uplifting song, ‘Happy’. A re-worked version of this song has been released with our brand new album ‘Oceans’, pre-released for Christmas 2015 and CCOP21.

But what makes us happy?

Study after study has shown that connecting with the natural world improves mental and physical health and ultimately our ‘happiness quotient’. A recent article from Psychology Today discusses how children who lack a connection to nature are more likely to suffer from depression and obesity and worryingly, are less likely to value sustainable lifestyles.

Other studies have found that there are ‘anti-depressant’ microbes in soil, giving rise to outlandish headlines such as ‘Soil is the new Prozac’! Whilst this kind of hype takes the findings to extremes, the fact remains that getting out into nature, getting your hands in the soil, and experiencing direct contact with the natural world is scientifically proven to make you happier.

In these times of global turmoil, with the threat of climate change and terrorism hanging over our heads, I’m reminded of a wonderful poem by Wendell Berry called ‘The Peace of Wild Things’ that encapsulates how nature nourishes the soul. If you want to look after your health and happiness, look after nature.

The Peace of Wild Things

By Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me

and I wake in the night at the least sound

in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,

I go and lie down where the wood drake

rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.

I come into the peace of wild things

who do not tax their lives with forethought

of grief. I come into the presence of still water.

and I feel above me the day-blind stars

waiting with their light. For a time

I rest I the grace of the world, and am free.

You can now listen to and download our new album Oceans on www.oceansalbum.com – all proceeds go towards projects that assist ocean conservation and victims of climate change worldwide. 

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