Taking counselling outside
“An essential component of this self-care can take the form of spending time in nature. Natural environments—green spaces, lakes or oceans, the mountains, and the forest—tend to have a present-centering effect that brings our attention to the here and now. It precipitates a shift from the sympathetic division of the central nervous system (that engages in response to stress) to the parasympathetic division. This activates the body’s relaxation response, wherein breathing slows down and deepens, internal dialogue becomes less incessant, and worries are less pressing.”
Why do I take clients outside?
The idea started with my own experiences of feeling stressed, low and anxious. During my year on the Diploma, I noticed in particular how being in green and natural spaces made me feel. I started to enjoy the long bus journey to Uni because I got to look at the green fields lining the road. When things got stressful on campus I walked around the large beautiful lake. Since finishing the Diploma I have been walking more and more. I’m more recently noticing the benefits of simply sitting somewhere quiet as well. There have been times when I’ve felt incredibly overwhelmed, taking a walk, either alone of with someone close has helped me no end. During the walk I start to leave my mind full of worries and tension. I enter the World around me. The experience of being in nature comes through my senses. The smells, sounds, the feel of the ground under my feet. As I walk my breathing is regulated. My muddled mind becomes clear and I start to feel at peace.
What I believe
I believe we’ve become disconnected from the World around us. More and more people are feeling stressed, low and anxious. Technology has increased the pace of life and we’re all struggling at times to keep up. We need nature. To be in nature and to experience the simplicity of life. I think this is essential to well-being.
“Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us. We need hours of aimless wandering or spates of time sitting on park benches observing the mysterious world of ants and the canopy of tree tops”
Some clients, I believe would benefit from not being in the counselling room but outside in nature. Instead of facing each other in an unfamiliar room you may prefer walking side by side. Being outside can offer psychological and physiological healing. By connecting to something greater than ourselves with the added bonus of gentle physical exercise. You can read more about the benefits here.
Where do I offer counselling outside?
I am offering sessions at Carlton Marshes, Pakefield Beach and Gunton Woods at present. If you live a little further out I can look into where we could walk. The pace is set by you and we can sit somewhere if you would prefer.
Therapy in nature is £35, if you’d like to know more please contact me.