Nature sounds create a gentle but powerful experience that revitalizes our body, clears the mind, and heightens our meditative state. These sounds can help us become focused on the present moment, so we become calm and relaxed. Sounds have a way of changing our moods – from the heart-stopping, earth-shattering vibes that we can’t stop dancing to, to the gently undulating waves that relax us, helps us sleep.
Are you feeling overwhelmed or distracted? Do you find yourself in a fitful state, tossing and turning with no sleep in sight? Then it would help if you had a medium that soothes your mind and places you in a mode of relaxation. How do you feel about sound meditation or, better still, the use of nature sounds to drop into a meditative state? Try any of the sounds below for a relaxing ambiance.
Many of us try working to the sounds of cabs running back and forth the street or the never-ending chatter and chaos in the office. That’s why controlling the sounds around you can help you get rid of stress. There are many sounds out there for this purpose, but nature sounds are so much better.
People across the world are listening to nature sounds for sleep, for relaxation either on Youtube or using any of the nature sounds app.
Regular meditation involves counting your breath, repeating a mantra, emptying your mind, and so much more. For some people with chronic stress, anxiety, or depression, it can be challenging to reach that deep state of relaxation. With nature sounds and meditation, you can heighten your focus and awareness, practice mindfulness meditation, in the present with ease.
Nature sounds is especially recommended for newbies to meditation. Think about it, merely sitting down in a natural environment, such as feeling the evening sun with sea waves breaking, while concentrating on your breath, can make it easy to feel that inner peace and happiness that meditation brings.
Close your eyes and play any of the nature sounds
Imagine sitting on the rocks with sea waves crashing below.
Bird in a Forest
A forest hike with trees and birds and nature all around
Imagine watching a snow covered peak with winds blowing,
Enjoy the sound of a waterfall with water splashing
Even if you don’t have time to enjoy the actual natural environment, nature sound apps are just as effective. The sound and vibrations will detoxify your body, opening your emotions to aid healing and lull you into a calm and meditative state effortlessly in just minutes. Many of the nature sounds for sleep can easily help you fight insomnia and other sleep disorder issues.
Nature Sounds for Sleep
Perhaps the street traffic or party next door is ruining your beauty sleep. Yes, poor sleep incites that fight-or-flight response (autonomic stress) and leads to even inadequate sleep. Sleep troubles are challenging to conquer, primarily if the problem extends beyond the annoying sounds around you. But it would be best if you dealt with it and early enough.
A study by the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine shows a direct connection between sleep deprivation and impaired cognitive function. The short story? Lack of sleep can make it difficult to focus on your tasks, can also lead to bouts of anxiety and depression. Poor sleep can even make us made terrible decisions. Below are a few examples of Nature Sounds for sleep.
Forest at night
Therefore you need to take steps to heal your body. Nature sounds for sleep can help. They relax you by helping you enjoy consistent noises on a pleasant pitch. This lowers the body’s flight-or-fight response, stress levels, and enables you to settle down to higher quality sleep.
Sure, you might already find comfort with easy-listening jazz music. However, nature provides a much slower sound that is subtle, non-threatening, and yet deeply powerful. It will also effectively mask other disruptive background sounds, maintain a fairly-steady noise level, and lull you off to sleep.
Studies also show that nature sounds are even more effective than artificial sounds or deep silence for sleep. In reality, many people find deep silence to be ‘deafening and disconcerting.’ A National Trust Research found that rustling leaves and birdsongs were much more useful than deep silence.
Your Brain and Nature
Research shows a strong connection between the time we spend in nature and reduced anxiety, stress, and depression. Although there are no clear indications yet, it’s already widely acknowledged that nature’s feel has a positive and wholesome mental effect. According to a 2015 study, healthy people, after spending 90 minutes in a natural setting, had lower activities in the prefrontal cortex of their brain region. This region is associated with negative emotions, so the researchers deduced that spending time in nature helps us focus on positive thoughts instead of the negative things we deal with. Even so, this same research found that a simple walkthrough of nature boosts our immune system because we inhale, phytoncides which trees release to protect themselves from insects and germs.
However, each type of sound has some variation and our choices are also different. It varies from person to person. As such one must try a few variation before deciding on which type of nature sound is most suitable for relaxation. Below is an example of four different rain sounds:
Rain behind window
Rain on leaves
Another study in the 1980s shows that sick patients healed faster when they looked at natural (green) spaces from their windows.
More studies also showed that this interaction comes from the sight, feel, and sounds of nature, which calms our body’s fight-or-flight, reduces stress hormone levels, and lowers our blood pressure.
Many studies in neuroscience and psychology show that when we spend time in green spaces, we gain plenty of positive effects from our brain waves to protein markets and heart rate. A study in 2009 found lower incidences of over 15 diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, anxiety, depression, migraines, and asthma in people that lived within half a mile of a natural environment. Another study in Toronto involving 31 000 residents shows that nature helps to lower stress hormones and mortality.
Natural sounds are better than a deafening silence
So, when we immerse in the visuals, sounds, and feel of the natural environment, our thoughts become less filled with worry. Think about it: basking in the early evening sun or sitting at the banks of a river and watching the rushing water. Even walking slowly and aimlessly in nature can create a sense of comfort. Some studies have even shown that creating your own green space through arts or gardening can also bring soothing nature effects to your doorstep. Nature can be of great help in stress relief.
But you can amplify those results by using nature sounds recorded or artificially designed for use anywhere you like. Nature sounds can ease our stress and worry, restore our mood, rejuvenate, and fill us with energy and vitality. Studies also show that nature sounds apps induce relaxing activities in the brain.
The Benefits of Nature Sounds
According to a 2017 study, researchers used an MRI scan to measure brain activity in people using apps with nature sounds or artificial environments.
When these people listened to the sounds, their brain’s connectivity reflected on an outward focus, which is a process that occurs when we are daydreaming. In sharp contrast, those listening to artificial sounds have an inward-directed focus often associated with states of depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and anxiety.
Nature sounds, as found by research, are much more effective for ill patients. Typical hospital environments have too many sounds, such as hallway noises, medical machines, and even certain smells that make a patient anxious. Therefore, nature sounds can help change their brain chemistry by masking the background sound. That way, they can relax, no matter where they are.
Therefore, visiting natural environments or using nature sounds appcan create almost the same effects in the brain.
Imagine walking in a forest with a river nearby – listen to the footsteps and the birds …
Nature Sounds App can help you choose the perfect natural sounds for creating a soundscape suitable for your mood. Most of the apps allow you to mix multiple sounds. However, for an optimum experience, we suggest mixing a maximum of three sounds at a time. You can also choose a few sounds outside nature like monks chanting, chiming bells, aircon, bubbles, drone, etc. Some apps also feature a collection of nature sounds for sleep. As such you can use nature sounds while working also to improve focus and concentration.
Imagine you are walking in a forest with birds and a river nearby. We have created a sample mix using three sounds to let you enjoy the feel. Play the sounds on the left with eyes closed.
All you need to do is find nature sounds that you would love. We all love different things, and so the nature sounds we might like are equally diverse. Some people enjoy the sounds of rain – but these can be of many different types. For instance, rain sounds might mean listening to the sounds of rain on the rooftop, gentle rain falling on the grass, or even the stormy night alight with thunder. For others, it’s the rustling of the wind through trees or the sounds of water. For many others, it’s listening to the sounds of birds and crickets. The piercing calls of the faraway bird. The fast rushing water down the waterfall. There are so many nature sounds out there to enjoy.
Take out time to find the perfect soundscape and enjoy it. Usually, it’s about beginning with familiar sounds. For instance, on occasion, people who have spent time around beaches will find sounds from the beach environment deeply satisfying.
Bring Nature at Home
We recommend that you find time to enjoy the natural environment, by taking walks, camping, exercising in nature, etc. But you won’t have to go outdoors to enjoy nature. Nature sounds are especially useful for sleeping or getting back your focus at work. For some people, nature sounds can transform the home’s ambiance, especially if you want that great mental boost at the end of the day’s work.
Now you might wonder? How much time with nature is enough? The truth – as much as you like! However, you can enjoy at least 20 to 30 minutes daily, three-days a week, or even at weekends. So you can go out to nature through the activities you love or use apps with nature sounds. It’s even more satisfying and enjoying nature sounds from meditation apps because they are specifically designed for a heightened state of awareness and substantial relaxing effects.
Whichever works for you, you can still enjoy the same calming effects. The bottom line is that you should make nature a part of your everyday lifestyle.
Nature Sounds App
Not sure where to get started? Here is an excellent nature sound app you can download via your app store and start enjoying their soothing nature sounds.
Zen Lounge offers 20 sounds with a mixing facility for any three sounds. You can choose from nature, machine sounds like aircon, drone, and even monastery sounds like chants, bells, and more. The app is totally music and sound-based, and you can even choose mood music to mix with the sounds. The free version allows you to sample six sounds. Create a nature ambiance at home.
Nature has a compelling and positive impact on our mental state. There are many ways to tap into it and bring those nature sounds into your home or personal space.
Take advantage of nature sound apps and stimulate that immerse yourself in the rejuvenating effects of nature. Enjoy those non-threatening noises and lower your stress levels. What’s more, you can enjoy them anywhere you are – in the office while traveling or sleeping. It’s a great antidote against stress, depression and improving your overall mental state.