If there is one thing we can trust Scotland to get dead-on it is the best Doctor. David Tenant — am I right?
Time Lords aside, the other doctors in Scotland of the GP variety have recently teamed up with the National Health Service in Shetland to prescribe nature to patients with chronic illness. Along with their scripts and tips, patients will be given a list of seasonal activities to complement their treatment in a non-drug effort to reduce symptoms and assist their mental and physical health.
This October our Scottish friends are being encouraged to help their neighbours with their tatties (potatoes- I googled) and to find a “grottie-buckie” on the beach. Here in Australia our tattie seasons are a little different and we call our grottie-buckies cowrie shells, but the sentiment is the same. Find a reason to go outside, and in the words of my mother. Stay there.
We Spoonies are well aware of the benefits of nature for our various afflictions and are often told to head into the great outdoors, however, it can be a bit of a struggle to move out from underneath the blankets and the heat packs and go outside – where there is no Season 3 of The Good Place. Walking aids are a hassle, walking itself can be a hassle. There are people out there.
I am fortunate enough to live right near many walking trails and have been interested in the Japanese concept of Shinrin-yoku or Forest Bathing for a few years. The great thing about Forest Bathing is you don’t even need to move that much to get the benefits. Simply sitting and immersing yourself in nature a few times a week is enough to feel the benefits and a trip to the local park is as beneficial as the Amazon Forest — with the added benefit of no anacondas.
As a part of Kicking Hoops and Shooting Goals I have added hiking to things that I totally do now and I love it. I’m nerding out on wildflowers, checking out walking poles and actually peopling with strangers. Hikers are a chatty bunch.
As per the point of Kicking Hoops I am only doing what I can with what I have got. It depends on the day and it’s at my own pace for me. 5 minutes of sitting counts as much as 5 hours of walking and on some days the sitting will serve more purpose. Really it’s all just a big ball of wibbly-wobbly… timey-wimey… stuff anyways.