‘It’s the little, simple things in life that make you happy’: Gwen’s story


Gardening is more than a hobby to Vitality member Gwen. It’s a chance to keep active and a way to look after her mental health


The mental health benefits of gardening have been well documented.

Studies have found that a few hours of gardening can instantly reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Connection with nature is just one of the reasons why it’s beneficial for our mental health; along with the pride in nurturing plants, as well as the social relationships it can promote.

It’s also a good form of exercise, which we know can dramatically improve mental wellbeing. And for Vitality member Gwen, it’s also about the sense of achievement.

“I enjoy seeing the results of the time and effort I put into my garden,” she tells Vitality Magazine.

Gwen was introduced to gardening as a small child by her grandparents and mother and has been an enthusiast ever since.

Now, she gets to put her love for gardening and landscaping into her everyday life since leaving her job as a teacher, volunteering as a Ranger for the National Trust.

Something she describes as “rewiring”, not retiring. For Gwen, being active in her garden and as a ranger makes her feel good, both mentally and physically.

“I enjoy working out in the gym and running. However, the balance for me mentally and physically can be just walking, or doing something that I enjoy outdoors,” says Gwen.

“It can be the little, simple things in life that can make you happy.”

Watch Gwen’s full video below and find out more about how she’s enjoying the mental benefits of gardening, plus how Vitality has helped her along the way. 

As a Vitality member with a qualifying health insurance plan, you can access a Vitality GP through the app.

Here, you'll be able to book an appointment to see a GP, physiotherapist, access mental health support or call the Health Advice Line and much more.

If you want to know more about what's available with your plan, visit Care Hub by logging into Member Zone and access support and advice.

Related: ‘My morning run is my mental break’: Julian’s story

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Vitality rewards

At Vitality, we encourage our members to make small positive lifestyle choices that make a big impact. That’s why we offer partner benefits and rewards through the Vitality Programme.

Find out more by downloading the Vitality app or visit vitality.co.uk.