I have just come across the most amazing book. The title is Blue Mind. I first heard about it on the Weather Channel one morning. They were talking about the importance of water in our lives. As I have posted repeatedly on the importance of hydration especially during exercise, my ears perked up. However, much to my surprise, they were talking about the effect of, not drinking water, but being near, in, on or under water has on our well-being. How about that?
The cover of Blue Mind states that being connected to water in any of the above ways, “Can make you happier, healthier, more connected and better at what you do.”
On a personal note, I live on the shore of Lake Michigan in Chicago and for the past seven years have shared daily a stunning view of the Lake with my myriad neighbors. I love it and have felt heartened by it every day, but I thought that was just me. I guessed I was a ‘water guy’ or some such creature.
This is the view I have of Lake Michigan from my living room.
Blue Mind says otherwise. It appears I am not alone in my love of the water. “Blue Mind is a fascinating study of the emotional, behavioral, psychological and physical connections that keep humans so enchanted with water…you’ll read it once and then come back to it time and again…” according to the Washington Post.
The book is the result of more than a decade of research, combining cutting edge neuroscience , evolutionary psychology, human biology and ecosystem analysis with compelling personal stories from top athletes, leading scientists, military veterans and gifted artists.
The author, Wallace J. Nichols, is a research associate at the California Academy of Sciences and founder of OceanRevolution.org. His work has been broadcast on NPR, PBS and National Geographic as well as being featured in top magazines, including Scientific American.
A press release includes the following elements:
– How proximity to water prompts our brains to release cascades of feel-good chemicals such as dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin.
– How even a picture of water can have incredible calming and healing effects on those suffering from disease
– How our brain maps have conditioned us to prefer the color blue
– The evolutionary origins of our seemingly irrational preference for water views, (globally, water and water views impart a trillion-dollar premium on real estate). Location, location, location.
– How being near water actually increases our generosity and compassion.
As you may have inferred, my contact with the book has been limited to just a few chapters so far, but I am fascinated by what I am reading.
Just for fun …
At the risk of giving you a speculative recommendation, I would like to suggest that you invest in a copy and find out for yourself about what amounts to a whole new aspect of existence for many of us.
Here is a link to the Amazon listing for the book.