This week, we got some wonderful insight from Ben Page about the Joy Superpower of Being in Nature. Ben is a forest therapy guide that has been guiding forest walks since 2015. He’s also the author of “Healing Trees: A Pocket Guide for Forest Bathing” and has been featured in magazines like USA TODAY, Good Morning America and Women’s Health. Here are his main thoughts from this week’s episode.
“Forest bathing is the process of being outside in a relaxed way”
According to Ben, people often consider being outdoors as a rigorous excercise that has to be conducted in a certain manner, like by searching physical challenges or by leaving for a week’s hike in a far-away natural reserve. Meanwhile there’s nothing bad about doing those things, Ben emphasizes the importance of integrating small dozes of nature in your daily life for two reasons.
Firstly, searching physical challenges or extraordinary places brings us joy from the outside (pun inteded!): it’s about being in a good shape or about going to places where others go, which brings us a feeling of being a good person. One of the lessons of forest bathing is that you don’t need to be anything when being outdoors. You’re just a part of the nature.
The second reason for getting outside in a relaxed manner is that it promotes your bonding with the environment in which you live. When you go wandering in your neighbourhood, you can start to develop a relationship with the place: you start noticing small changes that you wouldn’t notice in places that you only visit once a year. Also, it helps you to incorporate nature in your everyday life.
“You are nature and everything is nature”
With Ben, we also discussed the relationship between being in nature and protecting it. As Ben points out, we often have hard time facing polluted or damaged places. What he suggests is developing an unconditional love towards nature, which can only happen by visiting it. Just like in human relationships, it’s hard to fall in love if you’ve never seen the person or touhced them. “Love is a sensory experience,” he adds.
Once you’ve started developing a love towards nature, you start seeing everything as nature: you start seeing “the concrete as rock or your telephone as metals” and eventually reach the understanding that everything is interconnected, there’s no binary. This helps you in appreciating the world we live in as well as in developing a sense of forgiveness.
TOP 3 benefits of forest bathing?
When asked Ben what are the top 3 benefits of forest bathing, this is what he responded:
- Your immune system gets stronger and the risk of catching severe diseases lowers.
- You get a sense of calmness for slowing down.
- You get the psycho-spiritual experience of feeling related to the land.
Have you tried forest bathing? Can you relate to the messages of this episode?
Share us your thoughts in the comments down below with the hashtag #joysuperpowers . In case you missed the episode, you can find it here as well as on all major podcast platforms!