Working in Nature

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A Brief Introduction to Walk and Talk Therapy

The Working in Nature day was a day of two equally engaging and enjoyable halves. We started the day inside college, cocooned with one eye on the weather as we examined and explored the differences between room-based counselling and ecotherapy. As the rain fell outside, we considered how the added dynamic of moving through a landscape provided an ever-changing backdrop to the therapeutic process; how we manage the boundaries to keep our clients safe – including contracting, insurance, risk assessments and what to do when approached by a wet dog.

After lunch we started the experiential element of the day – leaving the bubble of college and walking through the town, bringing our awareness to sounds, smells and sights of the manmade environment. We walked to a park, through the woods, noticing the changes (traffic noise replaced by the sound of the river, linear structures replaced by the tangle of branches). We walked, we talked and we stopped to notice the world around us and our place in the environment – and, yes, we did hug a tree!

I just want to say a big thank you to those who took part in the day, you jumped in with both feet!

Simon Heath – Trainer