Whether you have an office-bound job or a physically demanding one, if you’ve experienced the rush after a successful hands-on project, you understand the powerful mental benefits of working with your hands.

Mental health experts have pointed out the all-around benefits of physical work, from improved sleep to increased learning abilities. Endorphins require the body to move and endorphins are that “feel good” chemical released when physical work is engaged. This process reduces stress and becomes a beneficial, repeated cycle of sharpening the mind through physical activity which, in turn, increases overall productivity.

With that reduction in stress comes a good night’s sleep. Being physically tired, not just mentally, is what allows the body to maximize the benefits of deep, necessary sleep. People who dedicate an average of 5 hours of physical work a day tend to sleep well through the night and feel rested the following day.

In addition to lowering obesity, hands-on work also encourages better learning abilities. Take learning a bike, for example. Reading about how to ride a bike or watching a video online can provide a little insight to the imagination, but actually grabbing a bicycle and getting on it are the only real ways to ever learn the skill. With a rewarding activity like riding a bicycle, the drive to learn new things is enhanced.

So in the spirit of today’s blog post: get out there, roll up your sleeves, and get down in that dirt! Scale those rocky trails to a new viewpoint in your local national park. Get your gardening gear on and tackle that monstrous project, head-on. All the benefits point to having a healthier, happier body and mind.