Have you been feeling exhausted, anxious, or burnt out? Well, we have a splendid suggestion to help relieve your stress: Accompany us on a relaxing expedition of forest bathing.
Shinrin Yoku is a Japanese trend that means “immerse in the forest atmosphere” or “forest bathing”. In Japanese culture, people see themselves very much as a part of nature, where in the western world nature is seen more as a separate counterpart. The thing that both of these cultures have in common is this – they acknowledge that the forest possesses healing powers.
Back to Nature, Back to Our Roots
“Back to Nature,” is a phrase that refers to grounding oneself and simplifying life. Most people feel a deep ingrained intimacy and longing for nature. After all, it’s where we originated from. Before modern times, man lived solely in nature. Today our minds and bodies are lacking that calm. We are flooded with stimuli and the demands of everyday life. Forest bathing can give us the tranquility that we crave.
How Exactly does Forest Bathing Work?
Shinrin Yoku aims to actively strengthen one’s physical and mental health by consciously experiencing the positive influences of the forest. The forest is musky with dimmed light. The air is clean and the ground beneath your feet is pleasantly springy. The silence is interrupted only by the wrestling of the treetops, the mysterious cracking in the woods, and the chirping of birds. The mere sight of nature soothes and awakens the senses. Take time for yourself and go for a walk. Begin very slowly and relaxed without a goal. Take in a deep breath and, yes, hug a tree! Being in the forest will noticeably and immediately improve your well-being.
Natural Therapy for Stress Reduction
Nature therapy has become a recognized method to counteract the diseases brought on by the stress of modern society. Research sponsored by the Japanese government in the 1980s proved that forest air has a medicinal effect. Spending time in the forest lowers blood pressure, strengthens the defenses of the immune system, increases the ability to concentrate, and aids in calm restful sleep. Japanese universities now even offer a specialized concentration in forest medicine. In the official National Recreational Forest Akasawa in Nagano Prefecture, founded in 1970, there are miles of themed hiking trails and a forest therapy center. Five million Japanese take a forest bath here every year.
Bath in the Forest Air: Simply Get Involved
What a forest bath looks like in detail is ultimately a very individual experience. Forest bathing is quite simple. Let the beauty of nature affect you, whether you are doing breathing exercises, meditating, or simply drift in and out of consciousness. Anyone can do it with minimal guidance. However, if you would like to take a course, you can. Do something good for yourself and get involved!