Astronomy for Wellbeing

For this year's Youth Mental Health Day (19th September) and World Mental Health Day (10th October), we've put together some of our activities that can be used to help promote good mental and physical health.

The Office of Astronomy for Development is currently carrying out a project on how astronomy can benefit mental health. Psychology research shows that time spent in nature can decrease stress and increase attention span [1]. Research findings also show that an experience that elicits a sense of awe increases altruistic behaviour in humans [2].

[1] Berto R. The Role of Nature in Coping with Psycho-Physiological Stress: A Literature Review on Restorativeness. Behavioral Sciences. 2014; 4(4):394-409.

[2] Piff, P.K., Dietze, P., Feinberg, M., Stancato, D.M., & Keltner, D. (2015). Awe, the small self, and prosocial behavior. Journal of personality and social psychology, 108 6, 883-99 .