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Shinrin-Yoku Invitations

This is the page where you will find weekly Shinrin-Yoku invitations. These invitations are simple and will not take much time. They are intended to help you decompress, relax and ground you into yourself.
If and when possible, the optimal location to do these invitations is in a semi-wild forest environment, though a local park, garden or simply by a tree in your backyard will do for every day.


Every Friday, or thereabouts, I will post a new invitation, so you have the weekend to start you off. I will, of course, announce this through social media, and also have a widget in the sidebar and the footer that will make it easy for you to find this page. You can print them out and collect them, if you wish, so you do not have to memorize them, and can keep them easily with you throughout the week.

As more invitations are added, you can choose to do them individually, or several together, one after the other, to expand the benefits of your nature connection. You can also modify them to suit your comfort, location and the weather. They are, after all, just that: invitations. You can accept them, or decline them as feels right to you. The most important thing is that you are comfortable and feel relaxed. If you find yourself efforting, just let it go.

You can do them alone, or with others. If you do them with others, I suggest that you do so in silence, so each person can fully benefit from their own experience. You can, if you like, share with each other at the end (of each invitation or a series). If you keep a journal, you might fell called to write down your impressions and thoughts afterwards.This is what we do during an actual Shinrin-Yoku walk. At the end of each invitation, we gather in a circle to share what we experienced. It is called council. Each person in turn has a chance to speak while receiving everyone else’s focused attention. This is a very rewarding part of the walks, and I would like to invite you to share your experiences – if you like – here in the comments. Know that comments are moderated for spam and for negativity.


Overall, my intention is to offer you something easy and beautiful that will make you feel better afterwards. It will be like joining me on a Shinrin-Yoku walk from wherever you are.

I used to refresh the page and star over with new invitations every few weeks, but will now leave all the latest ones on the page. As soon as I have a moment, I will put them all in a free, downloadable e-book or PDF and make them available on this page.

I hope you will enjoy my little offering, and feel free to share this page with your family and friends. For those of you unfamiliar with the practice of Shinrin-Yoku, you can read more about it here, as well as about my own personal experiences.


May 6, 2016 – Starting the new month with new invitations! Here is number 17, and I hope you will enjoy it.



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


May 15th, 2016 – Pant, pant… A bit late this week, but here is Invitation number 18. This invitation will help you tune into your body’s innate knowing, or body radar. I hope you enjoy it!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


May 20th, 2016 – This week’s invitation is one I first did some months ago while walking with a fellow guide. If you are up for it, it is best done barefoot, and it becomes even more interesting at night, or at least dusk.



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


May 27th, 2016 – This invitation has been inspired by a rainy day, so bring an umbrella, or a hat if you like, but I hope you will enjoy it in the rain. Just be safe and avoid big storms.



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


June 3rd, 2016 – It is a new month, but for now I won’t refresh the page, and leave the recent invitations where they are. As soon as I have a moment I will make them all available in a downloadable e-book/PDF right here on this page, so you can collect them all together. In the meantime, I hope you will enjoy this week’s invitation, which was inspired by the mini bamboo forest at the Napa garden, as so often it would wave at me when I stepped out of the cottage, the taller fronds visible above the lower bushes. My puppies and I left on Wednesday to come to Carmel-by-the-Sea for a while. I will see what the new spirit of place will inspire. There are a lot of cypresses here, and the beach is just a few blocks down from where we are staying.



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


June 10th, 2016 – This week’s invitation has been inspired by my first experience in a new environment. Last week I moved from hot Napa to cooler, and more Mediterranean Carmel-by-the-Sea. Though still California, the natural milieu here is different: smells different, feels different, looks different. So I am noticing the differences (and similarities) as I explore. This invitation is perfect for when you are simply in a different place, or go on a trip or vacation and explore a new environment. Enjoy!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


June 26th, 2016 – Apologies for the delays in posting invitations. Work and life have been very full, but here I am with Invitation nr. 23! This invitation is for those days when you go out and walk a familiar path, whether it starts here and ends there, or forms a loop. Enjoy!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


July 8th, 2016 – A bit late again, but that may be the way things go these days, with so many changes and traveling around, and I thank you for your patience. This invitation was inspired by a wonderful book I am reading titled “Step Into Nature” by Patrice Vecchione, a resident of Monterey and fellow nature lover. I hope you will enjoy it!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


July 15th, 2016 – This week’s invitation is rather playful, and I hope you will have fun!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


July 22, 2016 – This invitation is to take place at sunset, or sunrise if you are up for it. It is best if you are somewhere where you can see the sun set and the sky change, but as long as you can see some sky, it will work. Enjoy your time in nature!




Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


August 5, 2016 – This is an invitation that I used to do in the garden in Napa during the spring from time to time. I have now added an extra element inspired by Patrice Vecchione’s book ‘Step Into Nature’. I hope you will enjoy it!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


August 12th, 2016 – This invitation is a combination of something I have been trying generally in my life, and thought of applying to Shinrin-Yoku while reading Patrice’s Vecchione’s book, Step into Nature. It is essentially an invitation for the times in between invitations. So pick a couple, or more, of the previously shared invitations, and then apply this one in between. I’d love to know how it goes.



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


September 2nd, 2016 – I wasn’t sure I had another invitation in me, but it seems I do. I wonder how long I will be able to keep going. This one was inspired by something I do all the time, that is so familiar to me that I did not even think of it being an invitation. Until tonight, when I realized the depth of magic one can create when truly connecting to nature. I finally got around to editing the more than four hundred images I have photographed here at the garden in Napa, and just by looking at them while working I was getting a high, a feeling of uplift and love. It is difficult to explain in words, but it was leaving me almost breathless, like some of the best music can do.

I am quite happy with my photography work, but with this batch it seems I have gone deeper, or higher, as the images seem to exude energy and magic. The only thing that I could think of having done differently than any other time is having truly connected with the garden. From day one it was love at first sight, and the love went both ways; still does. I would walk around even under the rain, talk to the plants, trees, bushes, birds and critters, talking to them, noticing every small change, telling them how beautiful they were/are… And of course, photographing them. And it is not even my garden, but in a way it is, and my pups love it as much as I do.

All of this to introduce the fact that this invitation is intended for you to have a camera, whichever one you have and like to use, from a big professional one to a phone camera, or your basic point-and-shoot. Then it would be best if you did this invitation in a place you are already connected to and familiar with, maybe where you have taken photos before. That way you and the nature around will already know each other, and the connection will be quicker and deeper. When you are done, notice if there is a difference between the previous and new images and the feelings they exude. Most of all, have fun!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


September 9th, 2016 – My 30th Invitation!! Let’s celebrate! Not that the others are serious, but this is a particularly playful invitation, inspired by what I have been doing myself in the past few days and will be doing more and more as the season progresses. And my dogs have been helping, with their long pantalettes that are like velcro. 😉 I hope you will have fun, too!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


September 23, 2016 – Coming home after dark a few days ago (and there are no city lights nearby where I am), seeing the moon and the stars so close, and hearing the concert of the crickets made me think how wonderful it would be to do a little Shinrin-Yoku invitation at night. So here it is!

Happy Fall everyone!



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.


September 30th, 2016 – One more invitation for you, my favorite Pleasures of Presence. That would be the invitation to get you out of your head and grounded into your body. Of course, you can just do this one if that is all you have time for, or you can start with this one and then add another one, or as many as you like.

I also wanted to let you know that I have created the promised downloadable e-book with ALL the invitations, and will make it available at some point in the next couple of weeks, after I have settled in Carmel, where I am headed again on Saturday, and will stay three months.



Click here to open the page from which to print the above invitation.



  • 03/11/2016 - 11:11 am

    Vicky Kyan - These are beautiful Monica- Thanks for sharing them with us ! ArohaReplyCancel

    • 03/11/2016 - 1:25 pm

      Monica Schwartz - Thank you, Vicky! And you are welcome. There were more, but I just refreshed the page. I’m thinking of putting them into a collection. Aroha! <3ReplyCancel

  • 04/15/2016 - 7:26 am

    Ben Porchuk - I love these. Thank you Life Out of Bounds. These are amazing to stay current and connected as Forest Therapy Guides.ReplyCancel

    • 04/15/2016 - 11:36 am

      Monica Schwartz - Thank you, Ben. I’m glad you are enjoying them! I would love at some point to experience a Shinrin-Yoku walk guided by you. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • 06/05/2016 - 5:04 am

    rue henry - Thank you, I was just introduced to Shinrin Yoku and thanks so much for providing me these invitations.ReplyCancel

    • 06/05/2016 - 8:02 pm

      Monica Schwartz - You are very welcome Rue, I am glad you are enjoying them. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • 06/11/2016 - 4:32 am

    Amos Clifford - I am so enjoying your invitations Monica! Thank you!ReplyCancel

    • 06/11/2016 - 10:37 am

      Monica Schwartz - You are welcome, Amos. I am really glad you like them, and very happy about how popular Shinrin-Yoku is becoming. Great job!ReplyCancel

  • 10/04/2016 - 1:57 am

    Susan - These are lovely! Thank you.ReplyCancel

    • 10/05/2016 - 4:36 pm

      Monica Schwartz - You are very welcome, Susan. I am so happy you enjoy them. 🙂ReplyCancel

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