What does “self care” mean to you? Does it consist of regular trips to an extravagant spa? Hundreds of dollars spent on the latest beauty must-haves? Is it one designated day of the week to treat and cater to yourself? Or is it the five minutes that you have to yourself before you get out of bed and start your day? 

No matter what self care means to you, one thing that has been proven is that only 68% of women are able to actively take the time to indulge in it. This statistic, discovered by Merrell, has inspired the brand to “empower and elevate women to rethink what self-care is by simply getting outside experiencing the outdoors  – the goal is not just reclaim outdoor spaces for women, but to help them reclaim themselves.”

Read as the brand’s Marketing Manager, Jessenia Flores, shares four tips that women can use to deeply connect with nature and enhance their self care routine at no expense to themselves.

Immerse Yourself In A Natural Sound Bath

“The actual sound of nature, paired with the greenery surrounding it – is proven to bring a calming state of mind that can positively impact your well-being. The National Trust found that listening to woodland sounds for just one minute resulted in people feeling 30% more relaxed and anxiety levels dropped.”

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“‘Smells derived from nature may be able to lower physiological stress levels better than visual and auditory stimuli’, according to a study by the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences at the University of Gothenburg.

Researchers found that appealing natural smells are linked to lower stress responses and faster recovery. Smells are directly processed by the hypothalamus (the brain’s stress center), meaning scent has a quicker effect on the brain than visual or auditory inputs.”

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Take Daily Walks/Immerse Yourself In Nature

“A study in England titled ‘Spending at least 120 minutes a week in nature is associated with good health and wellbeing’ examined the relationships between time spent in nature per week and self-reported health and subjective well-being. Results showed that individuals who reported spending more than 120 minutes in nature had consistently higher levels of both health and well-being than those who reported no exposure. 

Time spent outdoors is good for your body, mind, and spirit and has been scientifically proven to reduce stress and anxiety, lower blood pressure, improve attention, creativity, and self-esteem, and boost the immune system and vitamin D. All this insight helps to fuel Merrell’s vision into encouraging everyone to get outside as the ultimate form of self-care.”

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Breathe In Fresh Air

“One of life’s simple pleasures is taking a deep breath on a sunny day. Breathing in fresh air can increase energy levels, boost mental focus, and improve digestion. 

An interview was conducted between Minnesota CBS and Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian, a pediatrician with Hennepin Healthcare, about the health benefits of fresh air. Subrahmanian stated that ‘What we find is that when we’re outside, when we’re interacting, when we’re taking deep breaths outside, playing, we’re breathing a lot more. We’re taking bigger breaths’. Those deeper breaths help more oxygen flow into our blood and around our body, improving overall function and significantly affecting our heart rate and stress response.”

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With a passion and aptitude for all things creative, Jessenia Flores is a marketing and branding professional with over a decade of experience leading successful digital, social and print marketing campaigns. In her role as Marketing Manager – Cause & Ambassador Marketing at Merrell, Jessenia is responsible for fostering and developing meaningful relationships that takes the brand’s mission of sharing the simple power of being outdoors, further. 

For 40+ years, Merrell has been a trusted hiking and outdoor performance brand and believes in the simple power of being outside. Everyone is welcome regardless of who you are, where you came from, who you love or how you move.