In her new e-book Urban Wild: 52 Ways To Find Wildness On Your Doorstep, nature lover and trainer Helen Rook provides a plethora of concepts on how one can reconnect with nature even for those who reside in a metropolis. Here, she provides 10 suggestions on how one can go wild in an city surroundings, with out going too far afield.
1. Take a tree bathe
“You don’t need a towel – it’s about bathing in the woodland. It’s come from Japan, which is quite ahead in forest therapies. A series of studies in Japan in 2005 found, through blood and urine tests, that the levels of cortisol (stress hormone) are decreased after spending two hours in nature. Taking a forest shower involves absorbing some of the woodland. Look at trees branches, notice the differences in shape and colour of the buds in your local park – really observing them is likely to improve your mood.”
(*10*) she says.
Think about the place you need to watch the storm from – possibly not a forest if there are winds of above 40mph – and don’t threat hypothermia or getting struck by lightning. But don’t be afraid of getting moist if you need to really feel the rain on your face, she says. After drying off inside, make a sizzling drink and benefit from the energising feeling.
“Gratitude has been found to have lots of wellbeing benefits, spending time being grateful for things that are good in your life can improve your mood and help you experience more positive emotions, as well as reducing stress levels, and get you out of an anxious state,” Rooks says.
Use dried flowers, prints and leaves or flowers to create monoprints, or press flowers, hint leaf skeletons and take footage of nature to put in your journal. It’s about placing nature in with the gratitude.
“Encourage other animals to come and bring nature to you. My front garden is about 15ft x 20ft at the most. I have wildflowers, herbs and an apple tree in my front garden and it just feels alive. Having nectar-rich plants in there brings nature to you.” Even in case you have a tiny area, you solely want an previous bucket (with drainage holes in the underside) planted with wildflowers to create a splash of summer season color and appeal to bees and butterflies, she suggests.
“You can extract the properties of different plants in different ways, and in herbalist’s terms daisies are good for bruises. You just soak them in oil (sunflower oil is fine) for about a month, strain them off and then the properties of the daisies will be in the oil, which can be used to make balms or just put it straight on to a bruise.”
“Taking your shoes and socks off, even when you are just sat outside and feeling what it’s like to free your feet from the confines of your shoes, is great. We do it all the time on holiday – but think to do it on a more regular basis.
“If you are sitting on your balcony in the morning, take your shoes and socks off to get a full sensory experience. Or try to get different textures under your feet and feel the support of the earth,” she says.
“This might be something you’d naturally do as a child but adults should spend more time stopping and noticing the clouds. Just spending a minute being aware and mindful of your surroundings can have massive benefits health-wise,” she says.
It could be your backyard or balcony, or a metropolis area with a tree or flowers, however take a mat or rug and sit down for some time, pausing to cease your thoughts from chattering in regards to the stuff you haven’t finished or want to do, Rook advises.
Be conscious of your respiratory, the factors of contact your physique has with the earth and discover the birds, bugs or animals who’re sharing your area.
Even in case you have a tiny backyard, you may put up a chicken feeder and observe from a sit spot inside, or on a balcony. Alternatively, sit your houseplants and admire their form and magnificence, she suggests.
Blackberries in autumn are among the many most foraged of meals. Hook advises: “Focus on tiny things within the bigger picture of nature when you eat, the bud that formed, bees that pollinated the flowers and how the sun, rain and nutrients helped it grow and turn into these delicious berries.” They will style all of the sweeter for those who eat them mindfully.
Make probably the most of pure mild and all its shadows to take footage of landscapes and particular person vegetation, she suggests, both by heading off to your native city wilderness at completely different occasions of the day, or benefiting from what little outside area you may have.
Invest in a photograph ball that refracts mild and captures landscapes that seem to bend into the body. You might want to add them to your gratitude journal.
- Urban Wild: 52 Ways To Find Wildness On Your Doorstep by Helen Rook is revealed by Bloomsbury. Available now.