Always Well Within

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Stress Tip: Enjoy Time In Nature for More Ease

Would you like to reclaim your calm, your cognitive clarity, and your productivity. Discover the stress-relieving benefits of nature.

According to countless research studies, spending time in nature can improve mental performance, better your health, extend your life, and reduce cortisol, that pesky stress hormone.

In the 1980’s, the Japanese instituted a preventative health technique called “forest bathing” or “shinrin-yoku.” Forest bathing involves walking calmly in a woodland area, gently breathing, and taking in the sights, sounds, and smells of the pastoral atmosphere.

The proven benefits of  forest bathing (in study after study) are nothing less than remarkable, ranging from boosted immune function to lower blood pressure to improved sleep, in addition to the other positives noted above. The ambiance of nature also provides an opportunity for “cognitive quiet,” which can help you think more clearly.

When you’re not able to spend time in nature, you can gaze at photographs of nature or look out a window at a view of nature. This can help decrease your stress levels too although it’s not a replacement for getting out in nature to receive its profound healing effects.

Monthly Stress Challenge

Spend some time in nature, every day or every few days if you can. If you find this challenging, just start by going into your backyard for five or ten minutes or visiting a nearby park for a brief time.  Slowly increase the time as you acclimate to nourishing yourself in this way.

Try to spend an extended period of time in natural surroundings once a week – at least an hour, but an afternoon or a whole day could be sublime. If you’re not able to visit a forest, seek out an arboretum, a park, a wildlife sanctuary, a lake, an ocean, or a waterfall.

On days when you don’t have time to go out, bring nature inside to you through the images on your wall, your computer desktop wallpaper, and bouquets of flowers or herbs.

P. S.  My e-course, Living with Ease, The Mindful Way to Less Stress, offers a complete roadmap for dissolving stress and preventing it from overwhelming you again.  The course combines mindfulness, self-inquiry, and supportive stress reduction techniques to help you give stress the boot.  Check out the details here.

Thank you for being here.  If you enjoyed this article, please share it with others, every share makes a big difference.  Thank you!  May you be well, happy, and safe – always. With love, Sandra

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4 Comments

  1. Since the Fall is coming and the God-awful heat and humidity are on the way out, I will get out for my daily walks again. This has been one of those summers that make you appreciate a/c and iced tea more than anything else 🙂 I know that nature is all around you, Sandra, so I am sure that it is a daily practice for you to be outside every day. I am going to be able to do the same now—-we have a few more weeks that can be horrible but after that, lovely weather and beautiful colors!
    Love to you!

    • I’m sorry it’s been so stifling hot, Jean. It can get very hot here in the middle of the day too, so I don’t go out then. But I do get to the warm pond 4-5 times a week so that’s one of my favorite ways to enjoy nature since it sits at the ocean’s edge with palm trees all around. Enjoy your autumn walks!

  2. I have always found that spending time outdoors, especially in a beautiful place is renewing in many ways. Too many of us are locked up in our cubicles all day. Thanks for the reminder that I need to breathe in the outdoors more often.

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