Nature Meditation Escapes: A Guide to Mindfully Mending in Natural Settings
What is Nature Meditation?
Nature meditation is a type of meditation that involves spending time in nature while practicing mindfulness. Mindfulness is the practice of paying attention to the present moment, without judgment. When you practice mindfulness meditation in nature, you are intentionally bringing your attention to the sights, sounds, and smells of your surroundings. You are also paying attention to your own physical sensations, such as the feeling of the sun on your skin or the wind in your hair.
Nature meditation can be practiced anywhere in nature, but it is often most beneficial in places where you feel a sense of peace and tranquility. This could be a forest, a park, a beach, or even your own backyard.
How to Meditate in Nature
There are no right or wrong ways to meditate in nature. However, there are a few things you can do to make your meditation practice more effective.
- Choose a quiet place. If you are easily distracted, find a place in nature where you will be unlikely to be interrupted.
- Sit or lie in a comfortable position. You should be able to relax and focus on your breath without feeling any discomfort.
- Close your eyes or lower your gaze. This will help you to focus on your inner experience.
- Bring your attention to your breath. Notice the feeling of the air as it enters and leaves your body.
- As thoughts arise, let them go. Don’t try to suppress your thoughts, but simply allow them to come and go without judgment.
- Stay present. Bring your attention back to your breath whenever you notice your mind wandering.
Benefits of Nature Meditation
Nature meditation has been shown to have a number of benefits for both physical and mental health.
- Reduced stress and anxiety. Spending time in nature has been shown to reduce stress levels and promote relaxation. This is likely due to the fact that nature provides a sense of peace and tranquility.
- Improved mood. Nature meditation can also improve your mood. Studies have shown that spending time in nature can boost serotonin levels, which is a neurotransmitter that is associated with happiness and well-being.
- Increased focus and attention. Nature meditation can help you to improve your focus and attention. This is because it teaches you to be more present and aware of your surroundings.
- Reduced pain. Nature meditation can also help to reduce pain. This is likely due to the fact that nature has a calming effect on the nervous system.
- Improved sleep. Nature meditation can help you to improve your sleep quality. This is because it can help to reduce stress and anxiety, which are two factors that can interfere with sleep.
Nature meditation is a powerful tool for improving your physical and mental health. If you are looking for a way to reduce stress, improve your mood, and boost your overall well-being, I encourage you to try nature meditation.
If you are new to meditation, I recommend starting with short sessions of 5-10 minutes. As you become more comfortable with the practice, you can gradually increase the length of your sessions. You can also experiment with different meditation techniques and find what works best for you.
Practice 1 Walk and Notice Take a walk and notice the beauty that you see a gratitude and appreciation practice that can elevate your mood Take the time to really look at your favorite tree explore a park and notice something new a practice that will spark creativityLymeus F et al Building mindfulness bottomup Meditation in natural Settings supports open monitoring and attention restoration Consciousness and Cognition 20185940 Blanck P et al Effects of mindfulness exercises as standalone interventions on symptoms of anxiety and depression Systematic review and metaanalysisIn addition it seems reasonable to not only include nature in health promoting activities but also to include informal mindfulness ie guided attention to the senses with an attitude of nonjudgment and openness in
naturebased therapy Formal meditation in natural Settings also seems to be a promising tool and further research is Sit upright and stable like a tree Gently wiggle the toes like roots digging into the soil Slowly lift the arms to the side as if they were branches and enjoy a gentle stretch Wiggle the fingers like slowly fluttering leaves Raise the arms like the uppermost branches of a tree and sway from side to sideMindfulnessbased nature therapy MBNT is a modified form of selftherapy that incorporates nature connection guiding natural mindfulness practices amp forest bathing MBNT combines nature connection practices present moment awareness using sensory and breathing exercises This guided therapeutic approach to wellness and wellbeing helps heal 11 Background on mindfulness Mindfulness
has roots in longstanding Eastern spiritual traditions particularly Buddhist philosophy Buddhist philosophy and practices teach a way of being present in the moment and letting go of the overreliance that humans tend to have on a sense of individualized identity as a thinker of thoughts in favor of a broader connection to a sense of oneness It was hypothesized that meditation alongside stimuli reminiscent of the natural environment would produce enhanced effects Participants N 97 were randomly assigned to complete a 4week online meditation program consisting of a guided meditation paired with either nature sounds nature group or spalike sounds control group Whatever adventure you choose you will learn to develop and deepen a naturebased meditation practice that will serve you for the rest
of your life This book is for those new to meditation and for those who have extensive experience It is for anyone who wishes to take the contemplative awareness that comes from meditation into the outdoors
Remember, there is no right or wrong way to meditate. The most important thing is to find a practice that you enjoy and that helps you to connect with nature.