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What is ecotherapy?

by Tim Sumner
Published on 12 July 2021

I recently asked myself this question, and, being a member of the Environment and Climate Crisis Working Group, felt I should be able to answer it confidently. I couldn’t, however, so decided to reach out and ask some therapists who are doing this kind of work on a day to day basis. I spoke to Dr. Ruth Watson about ecotherapy, her work and how (if at all) the environment comes into the counselling space. Look out for a longer interview in the upcoming PCQ, but for now I’ll leave her response to the question “How would you explain to other counsellors what it is that you do with clients?” below.

Please note that her answer is representative of the views of only herself and not ecotherapists or any member organisations she may be a part of, as a whole. Ruth Watson is an outdoor (and online) psychotherapist, author/writer and workshops & organisational trainer. She has a new book called “GROUNDED: How Connection with Nature Can Improve Our Mental and Physical Wellbeing” which is available now and she can be found at // Instagram @whitepeak_ruth // Twitter @whitepeakwell.

RW: I would say I do what we all do in some ways, I work with clients – lead by them – on the issues and problems concerning them, and often that’s outside the room in an outdoor space, rather than indoors. As a result of that, in my work we are in movement a lot more than we would be inside or online, and this brings it’s own dynamic to the work we do together. This is my starting point, but how that work looks with clients varies person to person, and the role, impact and meanings of being outside in the rest of nature for the therapy changes from person to person.

 Eco Therapy

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