There may be different reasons for why you chose to start therapy outdoors. For example, you may feel the four-walled counselling space is quite limiting or you may have a special connection with nature that you would like to tap into during therapy.
What we know for sure, being outdoors produces a series of long-lasting benefits such as (and not limited to):
calming effect on the nervous system
relaxation of an overworked brain
reduction in heart rate and blood pressure
increase in vitality and energy
improvements with sleeping pattern
Being outdoors allow us to draw from the natural world to understand our own internal world and experiences.
First session - what to expect
You made an appointment with myself and you are now getting ready for your first session.
During our first session, I will go through the contract which I will shared with you prior to our counselling session along with my GDPR notice in the format that best suits you. For easiness, I would use the email unless otherwise decided.
Being unpredictable, the Scottish weather will surely be present in our counselling sessions together. Unless the weather becomes extremely challenging (for example, with heavy snow fall or very strong winds), sessions will be still offered at the time and day agreed. This will be discussed in details in my first email to you/over the phone or during our first session.
On the first session, I will also ask you about the reasons that brought you to counselling and what your expectations are of therapy together. There will also be space for you to ask any clarifications regarding any of the above.
From the second session onwards, I will offer you the opportunity at the beginning of the session to bring to therapy anything you would like to talk about. As I work in a person-centred way, I won't direct the conversation but I will use my curiosity to understand you and your world to promote further explorations of the struggles you are experiencing.
Outdoor therapy is about moving and sitting and anything in between in the outdoor space. You decide what feels right for you in the moment.
Session time for outdoor counselling is 50 minutes and I charge £40 per session. Please, bear in mind that working outdoors may at times require an extra 5-10 minutes to make it back to our starting point. Consider this when booking an appointment (which is part of the service so it won't be charged as an extra). Possibility for longer sessions can be negotiated.
Payments are made through an invoice that I will send you via email. If you do not have an email address, please let me know and we can find a solution together for me to pass over any information we had discussed so far.
If you book your session and you change your mind about attending, I am asking you to let me know as soon as possible so I can offer a refund if this is what you prefer. Although I don't generally charge for cancellations and rescheduling, same day cancellation will be charged in full to cover the costs I incurred in securing that slot for you that I would otherwise be unable to cover.
If I happen to cancel and you have already paid, I will try to reschedule free of charge. Further information about the cancellation policy can be found in the contract.
What you need to bring for your first session outdoors
Working outdoors can be exciting but it can also bring some anxiety especially around the weather and the clothing that someone should wear to make the experience as comfortable as possible. Below, I created a short list of the things you may consider carrying with you, knowing that they are not essential for therapy to work, rather they would create comfort:
footwear suitable for walking (or any pair of shoes that you are comfortable wearing for 50 minutes)
hat and gloves
I have been an outdoor enthusiast for over a decade, with most of my experience in the Scottish Highlands.
I am a registered member with Mountaineering Scotland.
I have a certificate in First Aid and I will be carrying a first aid kit with me during our session together.
If you are curious about other ways I work, you can find the information here:
If you have further questions, you can either email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or text me at 07594846033. You can also have a 15-minute phone call free of charge if that works best for you. You can also ask me anything about my practice or any curiosity you have about online counselling and the type of therapeutic work we can do together. This should give you an idea on whether you would like to start counselling together.