How is February’s Health Challenge going? It’s not too late to start – or restart – if you fancy giving it a go. It’s also worth continuing February’s Challenge on the darker, colder days next month.
In February, the stillness of Winter asks us to slow down, go inward, allow our deep reserves to coalesce. Done right, this compresses something within us like a coiled spring. When bright green buds appear on the trees in March, we should be starting to feel cooped up, frustrated, restless. This is because it’s time for frustration to motivate change, to thrust forward, to renew hope. It’s time for optimism to blossom again.
The Challenge for March is a great one to get you aligned with the energy of Spring – for transforming frustration into hope. It’s also simple, easy and enjoyable.
WHAT TO DO
Go forest bathing. ‘Forest bathing’ is simply taking a stroll in the good company of trees. You don’t need an actual forest. Any collection of trees will do, and anything over 15 minutes will have an effect. Forest bath as often as you can throughout March – there’s no risk of an overdose!
As you stroll, get to know the trees. Notice their resilience after Winter’s ravages, the enthusiasm in their outstretched branches, and their kindness to the nesting birds in their care. Pay particular attention to signs of new life. Tune into the feeling of Spring and open your heart to hope. This is the essence of the Wood phase of the Wu Xing, which comes into its own at this time of year.
WHY IT’S GOOD FOR YOU
There is good scientific evidence that forest bathing lowers your heart rate and blood pressure, reduces the amount of stress hormones produced by your body, gives your immune system a boost, and simply makes you feel better. So go on and dive in!