Enjoy The Benefits Of Nature

This warm weather has certainly been enticing for getting outside and is a great time to build a practice that will keep you going through Autumn and Winter once you have created that habit.
Nature is so healing and great for calming and soothing and giving you a good reset as well as the physical benefits exercise brings as well as the fresh air too.  After a shift I love nothing better than getting out the next day with my dogs to inhale deeply and feel rejuvenated.

So much of our time is now spent indoors often glued to phones or computers and it can be hard to leave that behind and get outside.  Science now supports what we knew intuitively that we have a biological need to connect with nature especially amongst trees which help harness a sense of well-being.  The Japanese call this Shinrin-yoku or “forest bathing”.  When you walk through a forest, you breathe in phytoncides which are natural oils released by the trees!  The results of studies conducted by the Japanese Government in the 1980s showed that two hours of mindful exploration in a forest could reduce blood pressure, lower cortisol (stress hormone) levels and improve concentration and memory. They also found that these phytoncides which are natural oils released by trees have an anti-microbial effect on our bodies, boosting the immune system

“Connecting deliberately and intentionally with Nature can help slow down the pace and intensity of life and reinforce an attitude of acceptance of life’s challenges. When we’re mindfully engaging through our senses with the world, we’re better able to perform tasks, deepen our focus, make better decisions and regulate our energy, mood and emotions.”  Jason Patchell Lead Performance Psychologist Surfing Australia

Further study done by The University of Derby in 2018 found that improving a person’s connection with nature led to significant increases in their wellbeing.

Forest bathing is not complicated to do but instead of just going for a wander take time to really  connect with your surroundings.  So venture out without headphones or looking at your phone and just enjoy the sounds and smell of the surroundings, touch the trees and really connect with the world around you instead of only being partly there.  

Some tips to get you started.
1.  Pick a quiet time of day
2.  Have a digital detox and turn off your phone
3.  Take your time
4.  Sit or be still and listen for the sounds the forest makes, enjoy the sounds of birds and other wildlife and the wind rustling in the trees or the sound the river makes.
5.  Use all our senses, feel how the bark of different trees feel, and how the sunlight catches the leaves, splash in a puddle - be in the moment.
6.  Pay attention to your breathing and take some nice slow breaths - 4 seconds in, 4 seconds hold, 4 seconds out and 4 seconds wait and repeat the cycle as much as you like.
7.  Stay as long as you want.  Although the studies recommended 2 hours even 10 mins can have a profound effect.

For a diffuser blend to bring the outside in and harness these benefits

Let me know what you think and how you get on.

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