Psychological Online Counseling & Coaching
via video telephony with Stephanie Pfeifer

"To see clearly a change of perspective is often enough."
(Antoine de Saint-Exupery)

Who has no time for his health,

will later need a lot of time for his illnesses.

(Sebastian Kneipp)

wald 002The first warm April and May days are behind us. Nature has awakened and has let our meadows and forests shine in a lush green within a very short time.

How many times have you been in a forest this year? Not often? Then I invite you to a little mental fantasy trip, which I like to use in psychological online counseling:

Find a quiet place, make yourself comfortable, and watch your breath for a little while: inhalation lifts the abdominal wall, and on exhalation, it lowers again. Lifting ... Lowering ... Lifting ... Lowering ...

Now imagine a hot summer day. The sun is shining and you have decided to take a walk in the forest. You walk along a narrow meadow path, and you can already see the dark entrance into the forest. The trees are getting denser, and suddenly there are hardly any more sunbeams penetrating through the treetops. It is noticeably cooler ... a pleasant coolness, after the scorching heat that has previously accompanied you on the meadow path ...

Try to smell the scent in the forest: fresh, spicy, a bit musty, moist ...

You enjoy the peace and quiet in the forest, because you so far haven`t met anybody on your walk. Gradually, you start to hear the sounds of the forest: birds chirping, leaves rustling gently in the wind ... somewhere you can hear something cracking ... there is a wild-grown blackberry bush, and you can hear the soft humming of a bee ... a thick purple blackberry attracts your attention ... you bite heartily into it, and enjoy a wonderfully fruity taste ... no supermarket blackberry can keep up with that.

You decide to stop for a while at the blackberry bush, and to appreciate the wonderful soothing atmosphere of the forest ...

If you have absorbed enough of the forest atmosphere, you can start your mental recovery. Stretch a little ...

Maybe you have been able to use the previous lines for a short break. Hopefully you could dive into the picture of the forest, and have been able to rest a little.

Do you belong to those stress-afflicted people who have little time for rest and regeneration? Who have a busy everyday life, or a busy job? Who prioritize their jobs and duties as most important tasks?

If a small imaginary journey into a forest can already create a sense of calm, how much more intense can an actual visit to the forest be?

There are studies stating that the forest, where the concentration of dust particles is much lower than in cities, strengthens the physical and mental health of people. While walking in the woods, the heart can beat more calmly, and the blood pressure drops. Stress hormones such as cortisol can be reduced and the individual well-being and feeling of recovery can increase.

Our autonomic nervous system has two opponents: The sympathicus, which takes on an activating function. And the paraympathicus, who is responsible for rest and relaxation, which we modern people often lack in today's fast-moving times. A walk in the forest thus can strengthen the parasympathetic part of the autonomic nervous system, thus supporting a health-conscious and balancing lifestyle: WITH resting and recovery phases.

Doesn’t that sound good?

The next summer and the next heatwave will come! The coolness of the forest could be just the right solution. On that note:

Do something good for yourself and your health, and take yourself and your loved ones again to a really beautiful walk in the forest! Children also enjoy spending time with mom and dad in the woods. Especially if there is often too little time for joint activities in everyday life.

If you want to talk with me about stress reduction in your life, or about other related topics, and if you wish to have a psychological online counseling, feel free to contact me: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For more information go on General Online Counseling.

P.S. I was in the woods today. It was amazing!


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