Interaction of disgust sensitivity and type of nature exposure on mood and anxiety
E.O. Wilson (1984) asserted human beings have an innate tendency to be drawn into an emotional relationship with nature based on our evolutionary history. This relationship with nature has been shown to impact several aspects of psychological well-being, and also be impacted by situational and personality factors. The current study investigates the relationship between someone’s connection to nature, their sensitivity to disgust, and the way they are exposed to nature, either using technology or physical exposure. This study used a video of a natural area as a technological means of exposing people to nature. Disgust sensitivity, connection to nature and mood were measured using different previously validated scales. Results showed that exposure to nature, regardless of type of exposure, decreased anxiety and negative affect. Technology nature exposure decreased positive affect while physical nature exposure increased positive affect. Disgust and connectedness to nature were not significant predictors of anxiety or mood regardless of exposure type. This research provides future directions for investigating how nature impacts mood.