Try this Japanese inspired nature therapy today and melt away your stress, restore inner calmness and enhance your overall well-being.
A friend recently introduced me to the term forest bathing. I had never heard it before however as it turns out I have been practicing it unaware of this Japanese term.
I often walk into the woods, sit on a fallen tree and observe my surroundings, taking notice how white the birch tree is or the quirkiness of the beach trees branches.
Other times I sit on a wooden bench near the stream where I focus on the sound of the water flowing or the carpet of moss beneath my feet.
Here, I am able to sit and be one with nature without distractions in perfect stillness.
FREE YOUR MIND USING JAPANESE NATURE THERAPY
The term forest bathing is the idea of immersing yourself in the experience using all your senses. It is the connection between you and nature. Engage each of your five senses; sight, sound, touch, smell and taste for the full experience.
Places to Forest Bathe
There are many places far and wide where you can expand beyond your box. There are Federal parks and State parks and local county and town parks. Or, there are bike trails and hiking trails. You may know someone who has a property with trees and wildlife. If you are in the area, check out this Adirondack Treehouse on Airbnb where nature surrounds you. Or, heck you may even have a little oasis in your own backyard, as I do.
Once you have found a quiet place, either stand against a tree or find a place to sit. Take a deep breath in, then exhale. Repeat two more times, or more until your mind becomes more and more distant.
Tune out the endless chatter of your mind and tune in the sights and sounds of nature. Each time your mind gets in the way with things to do and places to be and lists to accomplish let them pass.
You are the vessel or container. Your thoughts and ideas will bubble up. Letting them go without attaching to them brings overall health and well-being.
When your container is empty you have room for nature to speak to you.
Absorb the Experience
Focus in on a part of your surroundings such as the bark on a tree, the size of the tree, the shape and color of the leaves and or flowers.
Is the wind blowing? If so, listen to it’s sound upon the trees. Is it raining? Listen to its sound. Look up and let the rain fall upon your face. Taste a water droplet.
Or watch how the sun dapples through the leaves. If it’s fall listen to the sound of the dried leaves under foot.
Are the birds gleefully chirping? Listen to their voices and their calls.
Touch the bark of a tree. Is it rough or smooth? Put your arms around the tree. Do your hands meet? Give thanks to that tree and the many more around you. You have a symbiotic relationship with plant life in general and trees specifically for they give you the oxygen needed to support your life. And you in turn, support the trees and plants life by exhaling carbon dioxide.
Step beyond the hustle and bustle of city life, where a simpler way exists among the forest. Come home often and be one with nature.