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Many things have changed during the pandemic - one is the way in which we see, and how we offer psychotherapy. It has always been known that certain types of psychotherapy are very versatile and can be offered in different settings and particularly in more natural settings other than the conventional office. My main body of training is in Existential and Gestalt Psychotherapy which are particularly suited and are extremely creative and adaptable ways of working in outdoor settings.  

 Private family rope bridgePrivate family rope bridge

I have found that offering psychotherapy outdoors in varying degrees of nature, from local parks, trails, beaches to hiking up hills, has offered limitless opportunities for psychotherapy to be effective and in many instances to be more creative and enriching. 

 

Being forced out of the office by Covid-19 has had a profound effect on me, to the point where my practice has evolved in ways I never imagined and from now on I am enjoying offering a mixture of online psychotherapy, outdoor psychotherapy and in time, traditional face-to-face psychotherapy in an office when it is safe enough to do so.

 

 

How It Works…

 

As part of any good quality psychotherapy, there has to be an initial meeting where we can meet and talk about your expectations of your therapy, what you might want and how we might be able to meet your needs. For instance, some people very much need to feel the physical boundary of a room, it's walls, doors and sense of safety and for that reason, outdoor psychotherapy may not be for you. For others, boundaries mean different things such as a space of time allocated, a meeting place, a professional contract and agreement and these can give an equal sense of safety. 

 

We all have different needs from our therapy and there is no 'right' or 'wrong' if you are working with an ethical therapist; there is only a personal preference.

 

I always offer an initial meeting via Zoom/Skype and this is for us both to assess a way forward. Sometimes this may involve exclusively being outdoors, sometimes a mixture of online and outdoors and for some, exclusively online. (I never meet for an Initial Meeting outdoors and sometimes it may be necessary to meet 2-3 times online before meeting outdoors)

Cleveleys PromenadeCleveleys Promenade

 Having had horses for 25 years up until recently, and dogs for my whole life, I don't believe that there is any such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing; however we have to be realistic that if weather conditions are too hazardous or simply too unpleasant then we will have to sometimes revert to Online Therapy in these instances.  

 

You will of course need clothing that is suitable for the terrain and conditions and we will need to explore meeting places that are accessible to us both. I live on the Fylde/Wyre coast (FY2) and my office and practice (prior to Covid-19)  was PR1 - I work outdoors between these post codes and am always open to new places to meet.