Newsflash: It’s possible extremely likely that you spend more time indoors than is good for you. And it never seems more of a hardship than at the begin of each new year when you’ve just had some time off. Right? Especially if you’re living in a land where the sun is now shining. And even more especially when you look at the weather forecast and see 2 gorgeous days coming up smack bang in the middle of the working week.
How ’bout I tell you something you don’t know, right?
Well now, let’s see. How about this – did you know that all that time spent indoors can rob you of an ideal exposure to negative ions and cause fatigue, poor motivation, aches and pains, poor moods, and an overall sense of being unwell?
Negative Ions – What The?
Ions are small bits of charged matter floating around in the air. Scientists will tell you that some ions are charged negatively, and some are charged positively. Negative ions, according to Louisa Deasey of The Herald Sun Body + Soul, “are basically oxygen ions with an extra electron attached, produced through water molecules, which is why they are in such beautifully abundant supply near fresh, flowing water such as rivers, streams, seas and waterfalls.”
“This also explains how refreshing it can be to have a shower, swim or take a bath when we are feeling fatigued”
Negative ions are at their most plentiful in natural, outdoor settings. In fact, scientists have measured the air around natural water settings such as waterfalls and found that each cubic centimeter can contain between 95,000 to 450,000 negative ions. The typical office, on the other hand, tends to contain a few hundred negative ions per cubic centimeter, and sometimes as little as zero. Scary!
How Negatively Ionized Is Your Environment?
- Mountains, sea-shores, breezy forest: 50,000 – 100,000
- Country pastures: 5,000 – 50,000
- Most cities: 100-2,000
- Rooms with air-con: 0-20
As if that’s not worrying enough, consider this: in a controlled study of seasonal affective disorder (SAD). This study, reported in 1998, found negatively charged fresh air to be an effective treatment and prevention for depression.
It’s not just about feeling happy and having balanced moods – negatively charged air can also stop you from getting sick. In fact, many European hospitals and even offices have rules requiring the mandatory ionization of inside air. This may be due to the 1930’s work of a Russian professor, who found that negative ionization sterilizes air. Hmmm –
I just knew there was a reason I just have to take time off and hit the beach this week!
Ever Heard Of Chi?
Qi, sometimes written Chi, is the term the Chinese use to describe energy matter. In other words, it’s the traditional Chinese term given to ions, both positive and negative. If you’ve ever attended a Qi Gong class, or Tai Chi, or maybe even a good Yoga or Body Balance class, you may have heard the instructor mention Chi, and talk about balancing it.
Learning how to build balanced Chi, or – put another way – exposing yourself regularly to negative ions, can be an incredibly powerful way to improve your health, your energy, your moods, and your motivation.
Using Negative Ions To Harness Natural Energy And Feel Happier
You don’t have to quit your job and live on the land – although a week or so getting back to nature, such as a camping trip, would certainly leave you re-charged and feeling more relaxed than a busy city holiday might do.
10 Simple Ways To Negatively Ionize Your Life
1. Install a water fountain or live plants in your office and home. If you can’t afford both, I’d go with wherever you spend the most time. If you have a garden at home than the office might be the priority.
2. Avoid cigarette smoke, particularly indoors.
3. Avoid electrical dryers, both for your clothes and your hair. Drying in fresh air increases negative ions.
4. Minimize your exposure to artificial light and use low-wattage bulbs at home and at work
5. Always turn electrical appliances off at the power-point when in use, especially in the bedroom.
6. Exercise outdoors whenever possible. If you can do so along a river or near running water, even better.
7. Try to get outdoors (in a park or garden as opposed to city pavements) for at least 15 minutes each day. Preferably barefoot.
8. Choose natural fibers such as cotton for linen and clothes.
9. Avoid air-conditioned environments if you can leave the window open.
10. Try to shop at a farmer’s market whenever possible and enjoy food that is at its best rather than frozen, stale, or processed.
Oh – and maybe, just maybe, it is okay to take the occasional day off work to hit the beach!
Do you have a certain place you like to go or something that you do to calm your mind and re-energize you? Let’s hear it in the comments section!
Life is Now. Press Play.
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