Outdoor Counselling offers an opportunity for engagement between a therapist and a client away from the often clinical space of a counselling room that can sometimes feel too intimate or too threatening to a lot of people who would benefit from counselling the most.
Counselling is an important and often under-appreciated aid to our lives that can bring acceptance, understanding, and light to a person’s life through self-exploration and therapeutic tools.
People seem to fall into two polarised camps when it comes to counselling, be it indoors or outdoor, leaving us with a group of people who see and understand the benefits, and a group of people who profess to ‘get it’ but it’s ‘not for them’.
Outdoor counselling offers a limitless space where therapeutic conversation can take place inspired by the natural surroundings.
Counselling in a typical counselling room can feel intimidating, especially if it’s your first experience. You are often ushered into a small room, sometimes in someone’s house, where the blinds are drawn for privacy – but it can also have the effect of feeling locked in and claustrophobic.
One of the main advantages of counselling in an outdoor space is that it can feel much less threatening – the counsellor and the client don’t have to face each other and there’s less social awkwardness as you try to make small talk and learn to understand each other whilst maintaining eye contact.
In the radio programme Ramblings, hosted by Clare Balding, Dr Ruth Allen, a Psychotherapist, talks about her approach to Outdoor Counselling and how she’s found that it helps clients by picking up on their connection to the outdoor space, to nature, and how they are drawn to topographical features, specific pathways, and finding their own analogous references in the landscape around them.
Although temporarily halted by the COVID-19 lockdown measures, therapist Carmen Rendell is walking around the British Coastline on her Soul Walk expedition – raising awareness of outdoor counselling and the benefits of being more connected to our outdoor world.
Building a network of Soulwalkers, Carmen wants us all to have a better connection with our surroundings and ourselves – to understand ourselves can help us with our mental wellbeing and our physical wellbeing, our relationships with ourselves and others, and to bring us clarity when we are feeling overwhelmed.
Surely that’s worth getting out of the house for. Find out more here http://soulhub.co.uk/soulwalk/