In Japan, forest bathing, shinrin-yoku, shinrin means “forest,” and yoku means “bath.” So by practicing forest bathing, you are bathing in the forest, taking in the sunlight, fresh air, sounds, and scents of the trees that surround you.
Forest bathing has been found to alleviate stress and worry and helps us to relax and unwind. Being in nature restores our body and mind. Through nature we let go of our stressors as nature absorbs that energy and replaces it with a feeling of peace and rejuvenation.
Make the intention to go out into nature. Your goal is walking slowly without any destination as you absorb the sounds, sights and smells of the natural world around you. Be mindful as as you connect to nature through your ears, eyes, nose, hands, and feet. Listen to the birds chirping and the sound of the wind in the trees. Notice the different greens of the plants and trees and the sunlight shining through the branches. Smell the scent of the forest and breathe it into every pore of your being. Hold your hands on a tree; feel its strength. Maybe even hug the tree. Dip your fingers and toes into a river or lake. Walk barefoot on the ground and feel the dirt or mud between your toes. Let all of your senses be absorbed by the forest, become one with the forest. Let nature heal. Nature is the best medicine.
Forest bathing can be done anywhere in the world. It can also be done all year long, in hot or cold weather, rain or shine, and even in the snow.
Let the forest be your therapist.