Tips to Help You Reconnect to Nature and Yourself
Forest Bathing is the practice of reconnecting with nature and disconnecting from daily distractions while incorporating nature into your life.
If you haven’t yet heard of forest bathing, here’s a little introduction. Forest bathing, which comes from the Japanese term “shinrin-yoku,” which literally translates to “forest bath,” is a practice aimed to relax and slow you down. This simple method of being calm and quiet amongst the trees, observing nature around you whilst breathing deeply can help both adults and children to de-stress and boost health and wellbeing in a natural way.
In our over-stimulating and overwhelming world - with screens, noise, and busy work schedules - forest bathing is the exact opposite. This time is meant for you to focus on reconnecting to your breath, nature, and the present moment. While there are possibilities to join a guided forest bathing session, here are some tips to try forest bathing on your own.
Don't make a plan
Leave behind your goals and expectations and wander aimlessly, allowing your body to take you wherever it wants. When you’re forest bathing, you’re not meant to move very far through the forest. Instead of planning on following a specific trail, expect only to spend time in nature. Once you’re out in the middle of your forest bathing practice, the only thing you should follow is whatever your body feels like doing. If you want to sit, you can sit. If you want to take a few steps forward to investigate a new area along the trail, you can do so. As long as you go slowly, and you try to observe everything you’re seeing, hearing, touching, and feeling, you’re forest bathing.
Turn off your device
Leave behind or fully turn off your devices to give yourself the best chance of relaxing, being mindful and enjoying a sensory forest-based experience. If you’re in a place that’s unfamiliar to you, you can complete your forest bathing by just wandering and exploring wherever feels right, and then if you get lost you can turn your phone back on once you’ve finished your session to find your way back to the trail.
Take deep breaths and be mindful
Pause from time to time, to look more closely at a leaf or notice the sensation of the path beneath your feet. Find a comfy spot to take a seat and listen to the sounds around you, and see how the behaviour of the birds and other animals changes when they become used to your presence. When you sit quietly try to observe your surroundings mindfully; avoid thinking about your to-do list or issues related to daily life. You might be surprised by the number of forest inhabitants you see using this technique.
Move slow and stay as long as you can
The more you practice forest bathing, the more comfortable you’ll get with lengthier sessions. And the longer you’re out there, the more you’ll notice benefits from your practice. By the end of your forest bath, you’re likely to feel calm, joyful, and more present and rested.
Ready to immerse yourself in nature? Book your escape here.