Episode 27: Connecting to Nature: Ecotherapy with Fi Garrard

Why is our connection to nature so important? How can coaching and therapy in nature be more powerful than sitting inside a room? And if we know nature is so beneficial for us, how can we begin to deal with the grief of losing it?

Fi Garrard is an outdoor counsellor, youth worker, gardener and dreamer based in Cornwall, UK. Her work is primarily outside and all about helping people connect to and be healed through the natural world. “Whether this is expressing grief about the climate crisis in a group or learning about growing vegetables”, Fi says, “every encounter brings us closer to our true nature and healing in our inner world creating, I believe real change in the outer world”.

As one of my topics closest to my heart, Nature Connection will provide the backbone to the next few episodes. In this episode, Fi and I discuss her work as an outdoor therapist and the transformational power that being in nature can have on her clients, before we delve into the wider issues of dealing with climate grief, trusting in Gaia, and how we might explain our exploitative relationship with the earth.

Listen now: https://anchor.fm/the-way-we-connect/episodes/Connecting-to-Nature-Ecotherapy-with-Fi-Garrard-eqeab5

Resources:

What is Ecotherapy? – Article

We Are All Connected to Nature – TED Talk by Nixiwaka Yawanawa

The Positive Effects of Nature on your Mental Wellbeing – article

The Work That Reconnects – website

Project Wild Thing – connecting children to nature – website

Episode 19: How can we connect to ourselves, to others, and to Nature? with Christina Echevarria

Do you feel that you are truly connected to yourself, to others, and to Nature? What does it mean to suffer from ‘nature deficit disorder’? How can we use ancient rituals such as tea ceremonies and sharing circles to bring about a more connected, conscious world?

ChristinaChristina Echevarria, MSc is a Transformational Mentor, Breathworker and Ceremonialist based in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is devoted to serving her community (virtually and locally) in ways that empower embodied awakening, heart-centered transformation, holistic healing, and authentic connections to ourselves, to others and to the Earth. I met her during our MSc course, where we were two of the only people who seemed to recognise the importance of spending time in nature for our overall wellbeing.

In this episode, we delve into everything from heart-opening cacao ceremonies to how we can help society to face the existential crisis presented by the latest climate science. We discuss the importance of rituals and rites to bring us in line with others and ourselves, and emphasise how vital it is that we are able to recognise that we are part of nature.

Listen here: https://anchor.fm/the-way-we-connect/episodes/How-can-we-connect-to-ourselves–to-others–and-to-Nature–with-Christina-Echevarria-ea30vs

Resources:

Christina’s website Stellar Shift – https://www.thestellarshift.com/

My MSc thesis – 30 Minutes in Nature a Day Can Increase Mood, Well-Being, Meaning in Life and Mindfulness: Effects of a Pilot Programme

Article – Children spend half the time playing outside than their parents did
Article – 3/4 of UK children spend less time outdoors than prison inmates
Article – People spend most of their waking hours staring at screens

Book – Richard Louv – Last Child in the Woods

Article: 10,000 – 100,000 species going extinct every year

Article – It’s official, spending time in nature is good for you

I also recommend Project Wild Thing, a documentary I was a *tiny* bit involved with back in 2015 (I helped them get a couple of screenings in Welsh cinemas) – https://www.thewildnetwork.com/inspiration/project-wild-thing