Since our early origins, humans have lived in small, tight-knit communities in close connection to the Earth. Compared to our ancestors, our modern lives are very different. For many of us we wake up to an alarm, rush to work, and do our best in the little time we have in the evening to tend to our selves, family and friends. For many of us, it can feel a losing game. In the fast pace of life, we forget the most important things and our most basic human needs. The stresses of everyday life have become toxic. While our modern lifestyle holds many conveniences and miracles, it is also causing us harm.
The work of ecotherapy is the work of growing our relationships to ourselves, nature and our community. It is not about trying to live as a hunter-gatherer or going back in time, rather it is about remembering what it is to be human and incorporating those insights into our modern lives to bring health, wellness and vitality back into them.
The three facets of the ecotherapeutic work I do are in building relationships to self, community and nature.
Relationship to Self
Each of us is on a hero’s journey to heal, grow and discover our life’s purpose. Through the process of learning how to explore our inner depths, we begin to heal past wounds, and revise the stories we tell ourselves of how the world is and who we are. In that journey, there are many challenges to face and yet through it there is a wealth of gifts to be reclaimed from deep within.
Relationship to People
We are social beings. We need others and a village, and yet in this modern age, it is very challenging to have healthy relationships or to feel a part of a community. For many of us, despite social media, texting and email, we feel isolated and alone in our experiences of life. Learning how to rebuild your personal village can create healthier relationships in our lives and return us to a deep sense of belonging.
Relationship to Nature
There is no coincidence that as we move further and further from direct experiences and participation in nature that depression, anxiety and other mental health issues increase. We were designed to live connected to nature, and yet, now many humans live so isolated and cut off from the natural world. When we explore our connection to nature, our bodies become more relaxed and healthy.