The natural environment can provide an opportunity to slow down, gain perspective and reflect on what’s going on. I offer counselling/walking therapy outdoors from the Ashdown Forest in East Sussex.
Not only are there proven physical health benefits to fresh air and exercise, but walking and talking can also provide a pace and movement that helps you to process your thoughts and feelings. This approach is also known as ecotherapy, engaging with the natural environment to support our own growth.
Personally I find I simply feel better after time spent outside – I’ve worked out a problem or let go of some stress or worry that I was holding on to. Many people report similar experiences. There is also something humbling about spending time in nature and noticing our place in the wider cycles of life.
Travelling to an outdoor space, away from your daily life, can also provide respite and a change of scenery that can be therapuetic in itself.
Why choose outdoor counselling?
- You already love the outdoors, or you are looking to reconnect with nature.
- You enjoy the space and freedom of the natural environment.
- Face to face counselling in a room feels too intense or intimidating for you.
- You’re looking to improve your physical as well as your mental health.
- You’ve had some online or traditional face to face therapy and are looking for a new kind of therapy connection.
Whatever your motivation, we will begin with an online introduction session via video or over the phone before heading outdoors and making sure that this way of working is suited to your needs.
If you decide at any time that the outdoors isn’t for you then we can return to meeting online (this is also an option in bad weather). Having said that I’m happy to go out in almost all weathers. Embracing the seasons, the cycles in nature and the UK weather can provide new ways of exploring our own moods and feelings.
There are benches on the route and I bring sitting mats with me. You can choose to sit a while rather than being constantly in motion. The sessions are flexible in this way and I will respond to what you need on the day, walking at a pace that suits you.
You may be concerned about bumping into someone you know or being overheard. Rest assured, we will talk through confidentiality as well as safety issues before venturing outside.