From WaPo comes an article on recent studies on how viewing nature can temper the banality and insufferable monotony of cubicle culture:
[T]he psychological benefits of green roofs to busy office workers may also be substantial, according to new research. In a study published in the journal Environmental Psychology, the University of Melbourne’s Kate Lee and a group of colleagues found that interrupting a tedious, attention-demanding task with a 40-second “microbreak” — in which one simply looks at a computerized image of a green roof — improved focus as well as subsequent performance on the task.
The research adds to a growing scientific literature on the health advantages — psychological and otherwise — of being exposed to views of nature in urban settings, for instance through the presence of parks or trees. Research in this area is so far along, in fact, that researchers are considering whether it might be possible to identify the right “dose” of nature that people need to receive in order to actually reap significant health benefits.
From another, similar study:
“Nature can provide cognitive benefits in much shorter timeframes, and in smaller amounts than previously demonstrated,” the authors concluded.
For anybody who toils all day at task after task in an office building, it’s hard to miss the implications. “Modern work drains attention throughout the day, so providing boosted ‘green micro-breaks’ may provide mental top-ups to offset declining attention,” said lead study author Kate Lee of the University of Melbourne…