As the weather gets warmer and the days get longer and brighter, my excitement to extend our therapy services to the great outdoors continues to grow. In May 2019, I am proud to announce our Walk and Talk therapy sessions will begin!
When we created Roots in Wellness, our vision was to have a therapy practice where we would promote not only mental health, but physical and spiritual health as well. It is so important to us to look at this holistic picture of health. As such, we want to ensure that we are doing our best to encourage clients to view their own wellbeing holistically, and for us to have programs that facilitate this. This vision led to us developing and facilitating more holistic services such as our Mindful Yoga Therapy Group and Walk and Talk Therapy.
So Why Walk and Talk?
I have always loved spending time outdoors on the trails, and have noticed for myself the incredible healing powers of nature. For me, walking the Main Loop of the Bruce Trail here in Hamilton is a meditative experience. I’ve walked the trail more times than I can count and the trail is so familiar, but the sight of its streams, mossy rocks, and the Hermitage never get old. Given the healing benefits walking these trails has had for me, it seems natural for me to want to share this experience with my clients.
Walk and Talk therapy provides a unique opportunity to combine the healing forces of nature, physical activity, and psychotherapy all into one. From CNN, to Glamour, and the American Psychological Association, Walk and Talk therapy is becoming more widespread and its benefits for both physical and mental health are becoming more well-known.
Besides its physical benefits, Walk and Talk Therapy can also enhance the therapeutic process by allowing for a less-intimidating side-by-side interaction versus the normal face-to-face interaction that takes place in the therapy office. Walking in this position can sometimes help clients feel more comfortable, allowing for deeper sharing and an increased sense of connection with their therapist.
Walk and Talk Therapy also provides a fantastic setting to practice mindfulness and gratitude, given the beautiful and serene natural landscapes around us.Nature can be a great catalyst for creativity, allowing clients to view things from a different perspective and helping to facilitate inner growth.
What About Confidentiality?
It is understandable that confidentiality is a concern for us and the clients we serve.
In Walk and Talk therapy, it is true that others may overhear the conversation as they walk by or we may see someone either of us knows on the trail.
Prior to beginning Walk and Talk Therapy, we will take time in-office to review a consent form specially tailored to these confidentiality issues and discuss your comfort level with various options. We may agree to limit our conversation when in earshot of another person, and we will make an agreement as to how we will handle the potential situation of running into someone you may know. We may also discuss whether there are certain issues you prefer not to discuss at Walk and Talk therapy, instead opting to discuss those during in-office sessions. My goal is to make you feel comfortable so that you may get the most out of your therapy session, whether in-office or in the forest!
Who is Walk and Talk Therapy For?
Walk and Talk Therapy is for anyone who loves being outside and enjoys being physically active. It is for those who love to try new things, and who feel comforted in the presence of nature.
Walk and Talk Therapy is especially helpful for those who may feel restless during therapy sessions, or who do their best thinking when they’re on the move!
There is no one issue that necessitates or prevents you from participating in Walk and Talk Therapy – it is up to you which therapy method you feel most comfortable with! The beautiful thing is, Walk and Talk Therapy can start or stop at any time – it’s up to you to decide when and how many sessions you’d like to have versus in-office.
To sum it up, Walk and Talk Therapy is a great way to address your overall wellness both mentally and physically.
To find out more information, check out our Walk and Talk Therapy page on our website at: https://rootsinwellness.ca/services/therapy/walk-and-talk-therapy/
I look forward to meeting you on the trails!
Kayleen Edwards, MA, RP