I don’t know about you, but I spend an awful lot of time indoors (and I can bet that you do, too!). My job as a librarian has me sitting in front of a computer screen for hours on end, and when I get home, many of my favorite activities (watching movies/TV, browsing the internet, and playing video games) require me to either be inside and/or in front of a screen. This constant glut of information from our phones, TVs, and computer screens, plus decreased time in nature is a huge factor in decreasing our mental health and causing us a ton of stress. That’s why its so important to find time to get outside and reconnected with nature. As the days are getting shorter and cooler, it might be hard to find convenient times to spend outside, but that doesn’t mean that its impossible. Check out one of these books, read it outside on a sunny afternoon, and then take a long walk, mulling over all the interesting things you’ve learned in your reading. Your mind and body will thank you for it!
Simply being present in the natural world – with all our senses fully alive – can have a remarkably healing effect. It can also awaken in us our latent but profound connection with all living things. This is “forest bathing”, a practice inspired by the Japanese tradition of shinrin-yoku. It is a gentle, meditative approach to being with nature and an antidote to our nature-starved lives that can heal our relationship with the more-than-human world. In Your Guide to Forest Bathing you’ll discover a path–along with specific activities presented by Amos Clifford, one of the world’s most experienced forest bathing experts–that you can use to begin a practice of your own. Whether you’re in a forest or woodland, public park, or just your own backyard, this book will be your personal guide as you explore the natural world in a way you may have never thought possible.
Shinrin-yoku is the Japanese practice of seeking a deeper connection with nature by spending intentional time surrounded by trees. Commonly referred to as forest bathing, the meditative practice involves all of our senses and has extraordinary effects on health and happiness. In Shinrin Yoku, Yoshifumi Miyazaki explains the science behind forest bathing and explores the many health benefits, including reduced stress, lower blood pressure, improved mood, and increased focus and energy. This useful guide also teaches you how to bring the benefits of the forest into the home through the use of essential oils, cypress baths, flower therapy, and bonsai. Whether you are exploring a city park, a woodland area, or even the trees in your own backyard, Shinrin Yoku will help you detox from the stress of modern life by opening your eyes to the healing power of trees.
The garden is often seen as a refuge, a place to forget worldly cares, removed from the “real” life that lies outside. But when we get our hands in the earth we connect with the cycle of life in nature through which destruction and decay are followed by regrowth and renewal. Gardening is one of the quintessential nurturing activities and yet we understand so little about it. The Well-Gardened Mind provides a new perspective on the power of gardening to change people’s lives. Here, Sue Stuart-Smith investigates the many ways in which mind and garden can interact and explores how the process of tending a plot can be a way of sustaining an innermost self.
Plant Therapy showcases the theory behind the recent surge in the ‘self-care’ approach to living with plants, no matter what your environment. We all know that being in or surrounded by nature is good for our health, but few of us take the time to understand why. As urbanisation swallows up ecosystems, and humans move away from the environments they’ve adapted to, it has never been more important to understand the relationship between plants and people.
Plant Therapy brings together two major trends – house plants and wellbeing – and enhances the value of both through making clear their connection with one another. When research has shown that the presence of plants can decrease blood pressure, increase productivity, and calm anxiety, both at home and at work, why wouldn’t you pick up this book and create your own calming oasis?
A life lived indoors is not a life lived. And yet many of us spend the majority of our days indoors, trapped in our own heads, addicted to our screens and online connections, and feeling more and more disconnected to our own bodies–and the planet–than ever before. Intuitively, we know that even a five-minute walk outdoors can calm us and awaken our senses, but we tell ourselves we don’t have time, or we can’t seem to make the time.
With this practical and uplifting guide, you’ll learn how to incorporate the practice of grounding anytime, anywhere, and find tips for including kids or your favorite pooch. Also included is an “earth journal” to log your experiences and positive results, as well as a troubleshooting guide to help ensure that you stay grounded in every season–despite the weather! This book will give you everything you need to enjoy the healing energy of nature–you simply have to get outside and get grounded.