Sometimes, the stress of having a job is just unavoidable. Emails, phone calls, meetings—they can all start to catch up with us. But one of the best—and scientifically proven—ways to deal with stress is to take some quiet, peaceful time in nature to relax and reset.
If you’re a business owner, you can help your employees do this by adding an outdoor nature sanctuary to your property. These areas don’t have to take up much space, and can be a much-needed refuge for workers who want a minute to get away from it all. And you might be surprised at how a nature sanctuary can give your employees tons of benefits beyond simply being a quiet place to take a break.
So how can a nature sanctuary make my employees better at their jobs?
The most productive employees tend to be happy, healthy people. And there’s no doubt that having plants around the office will make your employees healthier while improving their mood and productivity. But when you take things a step further and create an outdoor nature sanctuary, you’ll amplify these benefits.
Studies have consistently shown that spending time outdoors can improve short-term memory, lower blood pressure, provide a sense of well-being, and much more. These health benefits translate to better employee performance and retention. Spending time in nature also improves mental focus, which is critical if you want your employees to be at their best. And believe it or not, simply encouraging your employees to take more breaks can make them more productive, too.
That sounds great, but what if I don’t have much outdoor space?
Creating a nature sanctuary doesn’t need to take up a lot of room. A small garden-sized area can go a long way, and some companies even use balconies or repurpose patios to create miniature sanctuaries. So long as there’s a place to sit and plenty of green plant life, it can be effective for stress relief.
If you have absolutely no space outside, you might consider adding some interior plants to your office. In addition to helping clean the air from harmful elements including benzene and nitrogen dioxide, interior office plants are a great way to enhance the beauty and personality of your business.
How do I get started?
The first step is identifying the right area for your nature sanctuary. Try to pick a spot with minimal noise and ample sunlight to promote healthy growth. Choosing a location that’s already full of plant life is a great idea if you have one; you may just need to clear a path to get started.
Be sure to pick an area that’s easily accessible for your employees, but that doesn’t normally get a lot of foot traffic. You want your nature sanctuary to be a destination, not simply an area to pass through. And don’t necessarily rule out paved areas since you can use potted plants and hardscaping features to bring these areas to life.
The next steps are figuring out a design for your nature sanctuary and creating it. Some businesses prefer to let plants grow wild, while others take a manicured, orderly approach. Whatever your preference, we can help you design, build, and maintain your sanctuary so it can provide a relaxing refuge for your employees for years to come.
Anything else I should be thinking about?
Here’s one final tip: If you decide to create a nature sanctuary, be sure to share it on social media. You might be surprised how these areas can attract employees looking to work for companies who understand the value of being around nature. And it’s also an excellent way to show that your business not only cares about employee health, but the environment, too.
If a nature sanctuary sounds like something you’d like to know more about—or you’re ready to start making a plan to create your own—our landscaping professionals at Engledow are standing by to help. We have decades of experience working with local businesses on these types of projects, and we’d love to put our expertise to work for you. Give us a shout today to learn more.