New words – 1 May 2023

a blue sky seen through tree canopies
Taiyou Nomachi / DigitalVision / Getty

skychology noun [U]
UK /skaɪˈkɒl.ə.dʒi/ US /skaɪˈkɑː.lə.dʒi/
the act of looking up at the sky, thought by some people to be good for your wellbeing

Introducing “skychology” – the simple act of looking upwards, towards the sky. It has been found to have a positive effect on our wellbeing. The practice of skychology was coined by coaching psychologist Paul Conway. Paul says: “The sky can often mirror how we are feeling, and remind us that everything is constantly changing – including our emotions and how we are feeling”.
[, 6 October 2022]

soil bathing noun [U]
/ˈsɔɪl ˌbeɪ.ðɪŋ/
the practice of immersing your body in wet earth as a way of improving your mental health

Given the connection between soil and wellbeing, it’s no surprise that soil-related experiences could be the next big thing in wellness-based tourism and hospitality, with some companies already offering experiences that connect people quite literally with the earth. Typical offerings like organic plant-based menus will be built upon with experiences like soil bathing, mud spa treatments and food foraging tours.
[, 16 May 2022]

mind gym noun [C]
/ˈmaɪnd ˌdʒɪm/
a place or club where you can go to do classes and have treatments that improve your mental health

When I got an email inviting me to visit London’s first-ever “mind gym”, it’s safe to say I jumped at the opportunity. As someone who writes a lot about mental health and wellbeing, I not only wanted to see what on earth a mind gym actually is but also whether the classes and therapies on offer would make a noticeable difference to how I felt when I went in.
[, October 2022]

About new words

2 thoughts on “New words – 1 May 2023

  1. I’ve wondered why mind gym – or its trademarked cousin Brain Gym – weren’t in the dictionary for a few years.

    I know that a great many people do brain training [ever since 2007 I think because of some of the Nintendo Wii games there and Lumosity and NeuroNation].

    Classes and treatments – that aspect had not been highlighted before.


    Conway has some scintillating ideas about how sky therapy may work and its potential mechanisms.

    I find myself looking at the sky a lot – as a reminder to stay physically grounded and mentally well.


    Our different soils teach us a lot about life.

    New Zealand soils – like the ones in the Stylist article – are often black and loamy.

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