Coaching in nature

IMG_0425Are you feeling stuck?  Facing an issue that has been around for a while but you just don’t know how to move it?  Feeling empty or knowing something needs to change, but you aren’t sure what or how?  Coaching outdoors can help you find new perspectives, possibilities and potential.  This isn’t new news, St Augustine, the 4th century philosopher, is credited with the quote ‘solvitur ambulando‘ – we solve it by walking.

The pace of our busy lives can easily cut us off from nature.  At this point in human history we spend more time indoors, in unnatural light, sat at desks or in meeting rooms than ever before.  Science has shown us repeatedly that we need to move more, spend more time outdoors to help reduce our stress and increase our resilience.  Still further science and history tell us that time outdoors offers different ways of thinking “Sit as little as possible, do not believe any idea that was not born in the open air and of free movement”  Nietzche.  Finally, just about all of us are happier outdoors – what isn’t there to like?  If you’d like to see more of the research follow this link for a taster.

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The beauty of working outdoors is that our surroundings can help us re-frame and unlock our thoughts. We broaden and deepen our understanding and become more creative; we see things which previously might have been hidden and step beyond the things which made us feel stuck. We feel able to go further than we did before or become more courageous. And, because our senses are stimulated by our surroundings, become more attuned to what is really going on within ourselves.

Focus and clarity

When we spend time outdoors and connect to what’s around us through our senses – what we see, hear and feel – we slow down, ground ourselves and feel less trapped or stuck.  As we walk our brain starts to focus on our muscles and body and as your unconscious mind can offer you space to reflect and generate new ways of thinking, ideas and solutions.

New perspectives

Whilst out walking we can generally find good views which can open up your perspective.  The land offers a range of metaphors – for example seeing the cycles of the oak tree – as the leaves fall to make space for the leaves next spring, what in you needs to die back to create new space for fresh growth?   As the poet Rainer Maria Rilke said

If we surrendered

to earth’s intelligence

we could rise up rooted like trees.”

Coaching outdoors can help you:

  • Tap into new perspectives and increase your creativity and inspiration
  • Help you to connect to the here and now reality rather than the chatter of your mind
  • Build feelings of joy, wonder and gratitutde
  • Find new ways of sustaining yourself mentally and physically

Please do get in touch if you’d like to know more by email at achievingyourpotential@gmail.com or call me on 07572 876098.

FAQs

Where do you do it?

Richmond Park or riverside

Hampstead Heath

St James Park

Surrey Hills/Ranmore Common

If you’ve got another location that is calling you let me know and we can see what is possible.

What about the weather?

Whatever the weather, in urban or rural green spaces nature offers a thinking environment that can impact positively on body, mind and spirit if we only give it a little bit of our time.  It is always your decision about whether to walk or not, but with a good raincoat the experience of sticking with a walk despite some discomfort can help clients see what they might be able to do if they are resolute, prepared and persistent.

How fit do I need to be?

We aren’t doing bootcamp!  We walk at your pace and make sure we can still chat and breathe!

What equipment do I need?

Bring sturdy shoes/boots and warm clothing. It can be colder than you think being outdoors for an hour or more! A notebook, pen or similar may also be useful. And money for the café if you intend to treat yourself to cake at the end!

What to expect

There are fabulous opportunities for working with the metaphors an outdoor space presents to us, whether that’s the trees, water, sounds, sensations, the flowers or the paths. Expect to draw on what is around you to enhance how you work; nature may well become a second coach!

Equally, urban settings present countless opportunities to draw inspiration from signs, settings, colour, buildings and street furniture. We will walk gently, sit, stop – whatever works best for you. And you’ll know during the coaching session what is going to work best. There are lots of possibilities – close to where you live or work. Have a think before the session what appeals – do you want openness or the protection of trees, for example? From there, we can find a suitable location.

 

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