"A sit spot is a place of quiet awareness. It can be anywhere, but a forest bathing sit spot is always outside. Most people have a spot they are naturally drawn to over and over again. It's the spot where you instinctively want to sit down for a while and contemplate the universe. I have six spots in different parks all over my city, places that feel restful and calm and rejuvenating. One of my sit spots is at the top of a hill that overlooks the off-leash dog park in the park by my house. In another park, my sit spot is on a large boulder underneath an old oak tree with a view of the river.

"Find a sit spot in a park of a forest or your backyard or wherever you are in nature (ideally a place you can easily return to). Some people are drawn to a sit spot that has a wide perspective, while others are drawn to a place that is more like a nest or cove-like space that they can look out from as they might a hiding spot. Look around and let your heart guide you to a place to sit down. If you have trouble sitting, find a place to stand or lean. Get comfortable. Stay quietly in place for one minute or five minutes or thirty minutes. How much time you spend doesn't matter, it's how you spend the time. Focus on observing the natural world around you. . . .

"The sit spot exercise isn't a onetime deal. It works slowly, over time. Each time you come back to your sit spot, you might notice what is the same and what is different. Visiting your sit spot at different times of the day and in different seasons will help you to get to know your sit spot even better. You might notice which birds sing in the morning and which sing at night. You might have the privilege of familiarizing yourself with the timing of flowers blooming or the way the trees respond to the wind. You might begin to witness patterns and rhythms. Sooner or later, you may perceive a deepening of your relationship to nature and your connection to place. If you want, bring a notebook with you to jot down your observations or your reflections. Over time, many people find that their sit spot becomes a place that anchors them in their life, a place where they can go to cultivate presence, a space that connects them through the present to their past and their future."