Our lives are shaped by our mind; we become what we think. Joy follows a pure thought like a shadow that never leaves - Buddha
The world has literally turned upside down and we are all naturally out of sync with the global pandemic, and somehow we must find equilibrium but only some of us, can adjust, but what about the rest of us? It seems everyone's talking about anxiety, and it's almost, dare I say it, a trend. Anxiety - a trend? Well, the word itself, is a real issue and its repeated all around the globe across all media, but what's the solution? That's my point.
We talk a lot - and that's ok as long we have solutions that give us all real choice that challenge us in someway to do things differently -- as they say, when you do the same thing and never get results -- change the routine. So, what about -- and don't judge for me saying this, but hear me out. Forest Bathing. It's a new phenomena in the western world, but is becoming very popular to relieve anxiety. That may be a new idea, if you've not heard of it, but this may become a new and helpful trend for humanity and depression.
Forest bathing or forest therapy comes from Japanese philosophy (or shinrin-yoku) broadly means taking in the forest atmosphere, through our human senses. Connecting consciously with a sense of contemplation is a practice of connecting with our environment through our sight, sound and smell of the forest. It began in the 1980s primarily in Japan and South Korea, who have with scientific research highlighted a range of health benefits.
That may sound peculiar if you're the busy type, but we can't all stay busy forever. The best ideas come through the most unexpected situations. You might be surprised by the ideas and self-reflective moments that occur when we align with nature.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better -- Albert Einstein
Nature has a way of grounding us and making us know, that despite our circumstances, it can give us a sense of peace, which I believe is a good thing. Everyone feels moments of anxiety but it's how we deal with it, is a skill. It's not something we are taught at school, and to be resilient is to recognise self and that's a life skill and not something one can grasp, without pressure. As I believe when you are under some level of pressure, that's a moment where you can be still and understand -- what it is, that you are feeling and make a choice. That's self-awareness and to overcome a challenge requires this to be a constant habit of life.
Stress is a word many use as a habit, for which it is not relevant to the reality. Stress is defined as the feeling of being overwhelmed or unable to cope with mental or emotional pressure.
Let's be truly honest, we've all said..'I'm stressed out,' or this is stressing me out. Is that the real truth or have we simply used this as a habitual response to something we can have impact on, if we stayed self-aware? What I'm suggesting, is that we refer to daily situations and label them too quickly with the word - stress, but in fact, we can manage these situations, that come unexpected and are manageable. We may just need to go with the flow as we are far more capable, than we think or give ourselves credit for.
Men have historically found talking about anxiety as almost a bad word or a word to avoid, for the fear of someone labelling them as unable to cope. This might be in the workplace and has been an inner battle for men to recognise what it is - they are feeling, and to seek advice for it. Anxiety has no gender and for many women, they are more comfortable -- discussing anxiety than men and I feel, this must evolve in a positive way for men, in whatever way possible. The admission of being depressed, anxious or weary through external factors for men, is still viewed as a weakness, rather than a human thing.
Maybe, it is time for men, to step away from intense situations that take them on a negative spiral and go for a break for 10-minutes and reconnect with nature - whether that be the office garden, a local park, wherever trees and grass lay, it would be wise to seek these spaces for your own solitude and place of deep reflection. Every matter that comes as a storm, can cease with wise counsel from natures unspoken ability to quiet the human mind and bring a new lease of life within us all.
Never frown on what some may say is New-Age -- it's all labels at the end of the day. We all need to put our mind health first, and it's not negotiable. So, the next time you find yourself about to declare your 'Stressed Out Status,' take a pause, and get outside with nature and there, you may find gold hidden behind the sound of a Wren or Sparrow. That's powerful, when you unlock that door, which you realise, was always there.
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