Fall is officially in full swing! The lazy days of summer have been replaced with a hustle and bustle that coincided with the kids going back to school.

You can feel the energy in the air, and for me it’s even more intense this year for several good reasons.

In addition to prepping for the launch of my book and working with my patients, I just started writing for the Oz Blog! I’m very excited to be working with Dr. Oz again. You can read my first post here about how to reduce stress and emotional vulnerability.

And here’s another tip for ways to reduce stress: get outside!

Research shows that spending time in nature reduces stress and eases mental fatigue.

Now’s the time to take advantage of the crisp fall weather. Go for a hike, take a bike ride with your friends, or go apple picking with your family. Or try taking a walk during your lunch hour – it will clear your mind and give you an energy boost.

But what about the days when you’re just stuck inside the office or house? Brain scans have shown that simply looking at photos of natural scenes can have a calming, meditative effect. Plus they provide a cognitive boost when you’re fatigued.

Choose a tranquil waterfall or beach image for your screensaver. Or make a calming nature mood board and prominently display it in your office.

A University of Rochester study found that just looking at natural landscapes (as opposed to manmade environments) makes us feel more generous, connected to others, and in tune with our inner selves.

On that note, I’m going to pick up my son and head to Central Park so we can enjoy this beautiful day!

I hope you try these tips. Please let me know how being outside helped you de-stress in the comment section below.

Happy Fall!