Forest bathing or Shinrin-Yoku is a therapy that was developed in Japan during the 1980s, becoming a cornerstone of preventive health care and healing in Japanese medicine. It literally means “taking in” the forest pulse or atmosphere during a leisurely walk.
Practicing forest bathing has proved to be beneficial for both mental and physical health. It reduces stress, anger, anxiety, depression and sleeplessness and improves concentration, mood, happiness, it frees up and boosts creativity, improves the immune system and accelerates recovery from illness.
There are steps to how effectively take a forest bath, which can be summarized into this:
When going to a forest, leave all distractors aside (phones, cameras) and try to slowly walk and stop, soaking up the “tranquility” of the forest, find a comfortable place to sit and concentrate on the sounds and noises it lets out (rustling of leaves, the sound of the breeze through the trees, the chirping of birds). Try to blank out the stress of everyday life and focus on your present state enveloped in nature.