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  • Writer's pictureFiona Heard

March: A time for renewal and activity

As I look out of my kitchen window, I can see the copper beech in the park opposite me in full blossom.  The daffodils are also out bringing a sense of renewal and re-awakening from the dank, dark days of November and December.  We are not free of winter’s grip yet but it is undeniable that the days are getting longer and that Spring is not too far away.

With these small shifts in light, we can start to think about activities that we enjoy that get us out and about, forming plans about exploring new places or returning to favourites that bring joy and delight.  For anyone experiencing distress or low mood, the importance of exercise cannot be overstated.  We derive immense benefits from being in nature, whether it’s in open countryside, by the coast, or a nearby park.  We can track the changes that the seasons bring to our landscape through the plants and trees that populate and beautify it.

Being outside gives us a sense of connection to our world beyond our workplaces and our homes, which can often be stressful and sedentary environments.  It also reminds us that we are bodily beings, that is, we are more than just our thinking selves.  Tuning into our bodies in a mindful or meditative way can bring to awareness the daily stresses and tensions that resonate within our bodies and reminds us to look after our physical wellbeing which in turn enhances mental wellbeing.

Aside from the sociable quality of walking - you do not have to be in company to feel this -  being out in nature has therapeutic benefits as well.  Walking side by side with a companion rather than face to face can help to deepen a therapeutic relationship between client and counsellor that may enhance or improve an existing one.  Feeling relaxed and open to experiences can help free up our mental resources and critical thinking to resolve issues that trouble or concern us.  As an alternative to face-to-face therapy, I offer ‘walk and talk’ sessions that can be a welcome addition to the therapy space.  A simple walk in beautiful surroundings can be restorative and beneficial to wellbeing.



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