Those of is lucky enough to live near forests are familiar with the sense of well-being and “feel good” factor we get after time walking in the woods.
The Japanese have a word for it – Shinrin-yoKu or “forest bathing”.
Today is World Mental Health Day and it aims to raise awareness and help remove the stigma attached to mental health.
And “forest bathing” is recognized as one stress-buster. Fine, if you live in the country but what about the majority of the population who do not?
According to statistics one in four of us each year will suffer from mental ill health, or 13 million people.
If that number came forward wanting help the NHS would totally collapse.
One solution is that people are turning to technology in the form of smartphone apps.
The Guardian lists the following as their best five.
Catch It: Helps you capture and understand your mood using a journal.
Chill Panda: helps you relax by measuring heart rate and suggesting breathing techniques and light exercises.
Cove: creates music that reflects your emotional state.
Elefriends: an online community from Mind.
All are free from Apple Store and Google Play.
Finally, there is Silver Cloud: an online course to help manage stress and depression. Available via NHS referral.
This raises the question: what's wrong with our society that so many people are stressed out?
Link: World Mental Health Day