• Sonia Neale

Reduce your Anxiety and Depression with Nature.

I have been interested in photography since 1980. I’ve taken photos in many different countries. Each time I am behind the camera something wonderous happens. My focus is 100% on my subject, getting the angle right, the composition aligned, the lighting as optimal as possible, but there is something else that happens, right inside my body. There is an endorphin/dopamine rush where I feel a part of the photo I am taking as well as being the person behind the camera. It’s just me and the camera – in nature.


The place where I had this feeling the most was on a beach in Mandurah where I was taking photos of some ghost crabs. It was a warm sunny still day, and the sea was calm, and all these thin, almost transparent orange crabs started to dig their way out of the sand. Lying on the warm, dry sand and looking down the barrel of the lens, I felt I was capturing some very special moments. The best part is you don’t have to be a National Geographic photographer to do this. I’ve even used an instamatic camera at times, for those who were born in 1962 or earlier.



When one is in tune with nature, there is this “oceanic” feeling, an expansion of consciousness, a spiritual experience, enlightenment, self-actualisation, whatever you want to call it. This is where I feel at my best self. Whether taking photos or video of backyard birds around a saucer of water, or mountains in New Zealand, this is where for a moment and beyond, all my cares and worries disappear. I am in the moment. I am focussed and in the Zen flow, the zone. The part of the universe that quietens any depression or anxiety I might be feeling. Not just for that moment either, but whenever I am in need of a pick-me-up I remember the ghost crabs, the Splendid Fairy Wrens and Silvereyes, the 33km Routeburn Track, and the stillness and the feeling of being. Just being. Not doing. Being enough. Being good enough.




Nature is one of the best anti-anxiety and depression remedies, and it always available to you at any time.

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