Cotswold Natural Mindfulness & Forest Bathing

Is Nature the Antidote to Loneliness?

Today we live in a world that gives us the opportunity to connect on a global scale. Via our laptops and hand-held devices we can connect to hundreds of people around the world instantly via social media.


So why is it that at this time in our evolution when we have the capacity to be more connected than ever, so many of us feel so disconnected and alone?

I believe the antidote for loneliness is meaningful relationships. Relationships with the world around us, relationships with each other and the relationship we have with ourselves.

Most people try to create relationships with people who are like them or with people who they like. But if we don’t have a great relationship with ourselves, or don’t like ourselves very much, it seems impossible to develop a relationship with others in a meaningful way.


Nature is a wonderful example of an evolved and ancient system that thrives on meaningful relationships through connection.

Nature teaches us that relationships are built on giving and receiving.

Scientists have discovered that the trees in the forest feed the fungi networks with food, while the fungi supply the trees with vital nutrients which are usually difficult for the trees to access. As this bond deepens, the fungi are able to spread and connect to other trees forming a larger and larger network of interconnected trees.


This beautifully intelligent example of co-operation from nature teaches us an important lesson.

“The act of giving starts the process of connecting with others and bridges the way for reaching out to people who can give back to you.”

Sometimes, building new relationships with other people is not that easy and requires a lot of effort and practise. But have you considered that we also share a relationship with everything. Not just with other people, but also with animals, trees and nature.

It’s sometimes much easier to start the process of relationship building by creating a better connection with Nature first. The plants, the trees, the wildlife, the forests and the beautiful landscapes. Reconnecting and developing a love of nature in turn helps us reconnect and build a more loving and natural relationship with our selves, what I call our true nature. I find this can be a simple, yet powerful healing exercise.


Learning to reconnect with nature can teach us a lot about relationships and lead us to a pathway that ultimately takes away our loneliness.

With enough practise, we can build better relationships with the world around us, ourselves and share our unique gifts to reach out and help take away the loneliness in others.

To start this journey of better connection watch this fascinating video about the relationship between forests and fungi and then commit to taking action by:

  • Mindfully connecting with the natural world.
  • Building a sensory rich relationship with it.
  • Using your instinct and intuition to learn from nature.
  • Protecting Nature and giving back by becoming a “defender of nature”.
  • Sharing this information with your friends via social media and your other networks and connections.

ian sig

Ian Banyard - Author & Guide

Ian Banyard – Author & Guide

Ian Banyard is a Nature Connection Guide and author of Natural Mindfulness – your personal guide to the healing power of nature connection. He is passionate about exploring nature and empowering people. Ian combines a wealth of knowledge and experience from his personal and corporate life with intuitive and instinctive insights from his own inner journey, to guide others.

ad4Ian lives in Gloucestershire, UK where he guides Natural Mindfulness Walks and provides coaching, courses, gatherings and retreats, for others who want to deepen their connection with nature and their true nature.

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