Forest bathing (and just what the heck is it).

Just what the heck is Forest Bathing you ask? It is not what it sounds like…you are not running naked through the trees, free as a bird. You COULD do that but I don’t recommend it for like, a lot of reasons. Pine needles stuck in your feet for example. Tree sap sticking to your bare arse. That kinda thing….

The definition of Forest Bathing is as follows:

“Go to a Forest. Walk slowly. Breathe. Open all your senses.
This is the healing way of Shinrin-yoku Forest Therapy, 
the medicine of simply being in the forest.”

“The idea is simple: if a person simply visits a natural area and walks in a relaxed way there are calming, rejuvenating and restorative benefits to be achieved.”

Shinrin Yoku

Sounds simple enough, right? But it is surprisingly hard for some people. Like The Beard for instance. Never once do I see him without one of his two (YES two!) phones in his hand or very close nearby. We will be out in the middle of nowhere (that is when I manage to get his company on a walk- he really is an indoor boy-poor thing) and you will hear the incessant ping, ping, ping, ding of his phone.

Squamish forest bathing

Some people just find it very hard to disconnect with technology or to connect with nature.

I, however, am not one of those people. I grew up in Newfoundland where nature is abundant. There are countless views of rugged coastlines, endless sea and wildlife. I’ve always felt a connection with nature and would feel anxious when it wasn’t within walking distance. This was especially true when I lived in Toronto.

The urban jungle, while exciting, quickly lost it lustre for me and I yearned for “real forest”. You know the kind with bears, wolves and Bambi.

View on my dog walks

Forest Bathing is not boring. The forest is constantly changing around you. It is beautiful no matter the season, no matter the weather.

If anything would be classified as Slow living, I believe Forest Bathing should be. It clears the mind, it reconnects us with our primal past and there is beauty all around.

Deep breath.

Clear senses.

Calm mind.

Peace.