25 Aug 2020
This week Bec lets us know all about the concept of Forest Bathing - what it is, what it isn't (there's always the nudity question!) and how it might be helpful for you, to unclutter your life and your mind.
Explore the topic with us, and you might find yourself inspired to check out some Forest Bathing for yourself!
Firstly, there’s no water and no nakedness involved!
Forest bathing emerged in Japan in the 1980s:
- A physiological and psychological exercise called shinrin-yoku -"taking in the forest atmosphere”
- The purpose was twofold: to offer an eco-antidote to tech-boom burnout and to inspire residents to reconnect with and protect the country’s forests
- a proven way to reduce stress and improve mental health
What do you do?
- It’s not just taking a hike in a national park, it’s more deliberate than that.
- It’s meant to be an intentional, mindful experience, done quietly and slowly.
- You savour the sounds and the feelings around you.
- You sit and “become one with nature”, shutting out all other senses, or you walk, slowing and deliberately.
- You notice things, you engage ALL of your senses.
How can you try the forest bathing experience?
- Choose somewhere relatively familiar and close to your home
- No phones or distractions, and limited talking
- Leave your expectations and concerns behind
- The denser the trees, the better, but any trees will have a benefit
- Watch for things you can see, but not hear
- Listen for things you can hear but not see
- Take your time - a few hours is ideal
- Repeat frequently so the benefits last
Don’t worry about any rules, just do it imperfectly
For more information checkout the links below:
- TIME: ‘Forest Bathing’ Is Great for Your Health. Here’s How to Do It
- ABC Life: Japanese nature therapy: A beginner's guide to forest bathing
- Healing Forest: Forest Bathing – What, How, Where? A beginner’s guide
- National Geographic: A skeptic tries ‘forest bathing’