Forest Bathing

Walking in a leafy area for 90 minutes can keep you from dwelling on negative thoughts. Stanford resarchers

Are you a ruminator, “worry wort”, or anxiety-laden person? If you are, you might want to try shinrin-yoku, the Japanese stress-reduction practice of forest bathing. That’s right…bathing…soaking up the sights, sounds, and smells of the woods or other tree-dense environment.

Yesterday I finally had the chance to walk to my favorite nature center. The most exhilarating part for me was the spring flowers along the way…iris, peonies, flowering trees. But the tall ancient oaks in my little northern town of Itasca were the real, “Ahhhh” of the walk. It was a short stroll taken late in the day but upon returning home where the jets fly low on their way to O’Hare Airport, I felt calmer and more peaceful. Perhaps not a “forest bath” but at least a refreshing “wash up”.

Affirmation: Nature soothes me.

Coaching questions:  Research says that the typical American only spends 5% of his or her time outside. Is this your experience? What would a walk in the woods…a forest bath…do for you? Are you willing to check it out?IMG_0916.jpg

4 thoughts on “Forest Bathing

  1. I would love a tree bath. But since I broke my wrist last week and have a cast from elbow to hand, my balance is all off and I’m a fall risk. I proved that this morning by falling getting the mail. But I should be good by the middle of July and then I’ll take a summer bath. I enjoy your posts.

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  2. Oh, Mershon, what an evocative photo! I can feel the peace, smell the earth and hear the sounds in my mind. I yearn to have another “forest bath” in my favorite bower of all time: Muir Woods.

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