Want to learn forest therapy and how to heal with trees? Learn about the benefits of forest therapy and how to use it for your body and mind.
Forests are some of the best doctors out there, and forest therapy is not just a fad trend, but a new concept of medicine. Tree bark, buds, flowers, leaves, fruits, sap, and resin have been used by our ancestors as medicines for centuries. But more so, forest therapy means moving your body through clean air, healing sounds and scents, and cleansing views. This brings about not only physical healing, but also tranquility, harmony, and joy. In the heart of the dense forest, all of our senses go through an intensive revival on the path of finding ourselves. Want to learn forest therapy and how to heal with trees? Let’s get straight to it.
In This Article You Will Find:
Forest Therapy DIY – 5 Simple Ways to Heal with Trees
1. How to Do Forest Aromatherapy
Coniferous trees such as firs, spruces, pines, larches, and junipers release dozens of liters of aromatic essential oils, also known as terpenes. Entering a coniferous forest provides you with a free inhalation of these healing oils with tremendous therapeutic effects on the respiratory and nervous systems. On the other hand, during their flowering time, deciduous trees create a truly special vibe. Elderberry or lilac bushes, black locusts, and wild chestnuts, turn into veritable aromatherapy for various health ailments, and emotional distress.
Forest Aromatherapy Uses
- Pine forest therapy: bronchitis, asthmatic bronchitis, asthma, respiratory failure, and depression – for best effects do this aromatherapy during the budding period (May).
- Fir & spruce forest therapy: acute and chronic rhinitis, bronchitis, asthmatic bronchitis, excessive sensitivity to infectious diseases, and asthenia – the most active period is during budding (late May and early June).
- Linden forest therapy: hypertension, irritability, anger, hyperacid gastritis, insomnia, epilepsy, cardiac neurosis, hyperthyroidism, anxiety, hyperexcitability – for best effects do this aromatherapy during the flowering period (late June and early July).
- Hawthorn forest therapy: heart conditions (cardiac neurosis, angina), circulatory disorders (especially hypertension), hysteria – for best effects do this aromatherapy in May.
2. Forest Therapy: The Healing View
Doctors have noted that 70-80% of human consciously retained impressions are visual. Therefore, shape and color have a very strong emotional impact on human beings. While studying the mental and emotional reactions of patients in sanatoriums located in forests, psychologists have found that the beauty and harmony of trees have an extremely powerful effect on human emotions.
- Forests with sprightly, towering trees such as firs, spruces, pines, and larches evoke a sense of boldness and ease – strolling and contemplating these forests are recommended for mellow-type individuals, who require stimulation.
- Old forests, with exceptionally tall and vigorous trees, boasting thick and well-formed trunks – such as oak, sessile, and acacia – evoke a sense of strength, vitality, and stability and are recommended for individuals who are more fragile, mentally and emotionally unstable, as well as those experiencing chronic fatigue and/or are physically debilitated.
- Forests along flowing waters, of willow and osier, encourage tolerance, indulgence, and even humility. Extended walks in these forests are recommended for individuals who are excessively willful, prideful, and prone to unhealthy dominance tendencies.
- Forests in bloom, namely hawthorn, viburnum, rose hip, black locust, and elderberry bush, provide a sense of tranquility, purity, and reconciliation. These are recommended for people suffering from degenerative diseases, addictions (smoking, alcohol, narcotics), and mental illnesses with violent manifestations.
3. Forest Therapy: Fresh Air
Forest air is considered the cleanest and richest in oxygen because forest acts as a gigantic air filter, and at the same time, as large oxygen plants. For these reasons, forest therapy is ideal for regenerating and improving physical, mental, and emotional performance. The oxygen-rich forest air is recommended for recovering from illness, for revitalization and recovery, and even for improving mental capacity.
Did You Know? During the day, trees produce oxygen through photosynthesis, and during the evening and night, they consume oxygen and produce carbon dioxide.
For this reason, the ideal time for forest therapy oxygenation is from 10 in the morning until dusk, but if you are seeking the effects of carbon dioxide engage in exercises after 10 in the evening. Carbon dioxide-rich air promotes more profound breathing by stimulating the breathing nerve center. Thus, carbon dioxide-rich air eases the breathing for individuals suffering from asthma, chronic asthmatic bronchitis, chronic bronchitis, and respiratory conditions in general.
4. Forest Therapy with Sounds
Generally, people talk about the silence of the forest, but the reality is that the forest is in a constant hum, like an immense concert hall where the rustling of thousands of leaves, the chirping of birds, the buzzing of insects, the splashing of springs, and the roar of waterfalls and torrents all contribute to this marvelous symphony. Sound therapy is another key forest therapy procedure. Here is how to benefit from this healing therapy.
- Forests in wet and warm areas are the noisiest, with the clamor of birds accompanied by the muffled hum of insect wings and the noise of still-water fauna – these forests have a wide variety of tones and vibrations that are stimulating and invigorating, amazing for boosting joy, happiness, and enjoying the little things.
- Lower-altitude forests are abundant in wildlife, especially the healing sounds of birds chirping in a myriad of tones – these forests are ideal spots for meditation and grounding.
- Higher altitude forests are progressively quieter, featuring only the healing sound of wind rustling through tall spruce or pine needles – these forests induce a state of inner peace and profound calm, and are recommended for individuals who are overworked, stressed, or have been dealing with prolonged periods of mental tension.
- Fir forests are ideal for increasing inner strength, creativity, and personal freedom, boosting mental capacity, and alleviating feelings of worthlessness and dependency.
- Pine forests impart a sense of solitude, isolation, and dissolution of the ego, and thus are only recommended for individuals with good inner balance who wish to amplify their inner strength (not recommended for anxious individuals)
5. Forest Therapy: Use Color to Heal
The main color of the forest is green, with its myriad of shades, however, forest colors change with the change of season, and these tones are healing for different health conditions. Learn how to use forest therapy color:
- Spring – in April and May, forests are dominated by shades of fresh, vibrant, and radiant green, which is regenerating. These hues, beautifully highlighted by the brightness of the forest – not yet fully covered with leaves, thus allowing the sun’s rays to generously pass through – have the gift of revitalizing, invigorating, stimulating, and promoting vitality. Forest therapy during the spring season is effective for treating ailments caused by fatigue and sedentarism, premature aging, asthenia, general lethargy, sterility, and impotence.
- Summer – leaves reach maturity and gradually shift towards a darker green. The foliage doesn’t allow the sunlight to penetrate, making the forest a cool oasis, except for oak, sessile, birch, and pine forests, which have scattered crowns, allowing light to freely pass through. Shaded forests, especially spruce, fir, and beech, are recommended during this season for individuals with hypertension, allergies, heat sensitivity, and an extroverted temperament.
- Autumn – deciduous forests “ignite” in dozens of hues, from shades of yellow, orange, and red which stimulate creativity and optimism, despite autumn being considered the season of melancholy. Want to boost creativity and happiness? Do forest therapy in the autumn season.
- Winter – after the first snowfall, forests, especially at higher altitudes, take on a color that is considered the symbol of purity and cleanliness: white – which is soothing and relaxing in terms of color therapy. Do forest therapy in winter to boost immunity, bring more clarity into your life, and learn to accept life as it is.
Green symbolizes life and health, and is recommended, among other things, in the treatment of cancer, multiple sclerosis, inflammatory conditions, anxiety, and schizophrenia.
How to Heal with Trees – 10 Healing Trees
- Beech Tree – is a tree that knows how to listen. If you feel the desire to communicate with a tender and understanding partner, talk to a beech tree – brings order and clarification.
- Oak Tree – is a cosmic energy receptor with amazing masculine energy that puts energy into motion – strengthens the mind.
- Ash Tree – the sacred tree of Scandinavian mythology, ash is a tree that connects the conscious with the subconscious and brings negative thinking patterns to light – for balance and focus.
- Wild Chestnut Tree – conkers have always been considered bringers of good luck and fortune, while the tree soothes a wounded soul and brings peace – restores self-confidence.
- Pine Tree – has the strongest vital energy out of all the plants in the European flora, is an amazing tree for when coming down with a cold – brings peace of mind.
- Linden Tree – is a tree that offers protection, especially to newlyweds and love relationships, as is associated with love goddess Venus – the tree for healing broken hearts.
- Willow Tree – is the tree of good fortune and spiritual growth, but also acts as a mirror and amplifier of one’s state of being – enhanced self-awareness.
- Fir Tree – in Dacian mythology fir was the bridge between heaven and Earth, it is a symbol of strength and endurance – boosts inner strength.
- Maple Tree – has mellow and soothing energy, helps balance the masculine and feminine energies, and brings together all aspects of the soul – for healing past trauma
- Birch Tree – holy tree in Slavic mythology, it is amazing for emotional detox after the long, harsh winter – for rejuvenation and new beginnings.
Touch the trunk of a tree with the palms of your hands to discharde negative energy and absorb vital energy, lay down barefoot, with your back against the tree, or hug the tree as you’d hug a very good friend you haven’t seen in a while.
Forest therapy teaches us to harness the magic of nature not just to enchant our sight but also to better our health. The reason is that as we contemplate the herbs, flowers, wildlife, and trees in a forest in a state of deep peace, we bring in their vibrant beauty. Forests can make real doctors and pharmacists, advisers and friends, but also as a place of refuge for physical and spiritual regeneration. Use forest therapy with intent, gratitude, and respect for the healing and unconditionally loving nature surrounding you.
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