When you’re immersed in addiction, it’s easy to lose your connection to the world around you. Most people in that state focus primarily on finding drugs or alcohol to feed their addiction. It often takes intensive therapy to rebuild that connection. Ecotherapy, often referred to as nature therapy, is one unique way individuals in recovery can learn more about how we understand the natural environment. To learn about the benefits of ecotherapy, call Red Oak Recovery today at 828.382.9699.
What Is Ecotherapy?
When most people think of counseling, they picture sitting inside a room with a counselor alone or with a group of people. Therapy tends to offer a more cerebral experience, where you spend your time talking through your concerns and finding potential solutions.
Ecotherapy allows clients to take a more physical, hands-on approach to addiction treatment. It’s a holistic approach to dealing with the issues that played a role in your drug or alcohol addiction. There is still a significant amount of focus on your mental state. However, you also participate in experiences that reinforce the connection we have to our environment.
Nature doesn’t necessarily mean having to go outside. There are a variety of ways you can apply ecotherapy in an addiction rehab setting. While some ecotherapy sessions involve going outdoors, it’s more about incorporating natural environments into counseling sessions. Red Oak Recovery believes that ecotherapy is a good method of applying a whole-body approach to addiction treatment for conditions such as drug addiction.
What Are the Different Types of Ecotherapy?
The term ecotherapy covers a wide array of nature-based healing therapies. Some of the ways that ecotherapy may be used in an addiction rehab program include:
- Nature meditation: Clients have therapy sessions in a natural setting like a park through both individual and group therapy. Members may point out something that attracts them and talk about how that item ties back into their life. They may also refer to issues they are trying to overcome while in recovery. That experience can include contemplating a squirrel’s lifespan and how their frantic movements can mimic how you feel when dealing with stress.
- Horticultural therapy: Another way of applying ecotherapy is by having clients take care of plants in a garden. You may find yourself performing tasks like digging up soil, pulling up weeds, and planting seeds. The act of getting rid of things that don’t nourish your garden and putting down something new can reinforce what you’re trying to achieve while in addiction treatment.
- Animal therapy: Your therapist may bring in animals like dogs, rabbits or even have you ride horses to aid in your healing. Taking care of something other than yourself can help you become more responsible while helping you relieve feelings of stress or agitation.
- Physical exercise: Physical activity is another way of applying ecotherapy. You get the chance to explore activities like jogging, yoga, or cycling. That can help you become more are of nature and help you release any anger or other negative emotions.
People who have an underlying mental health disorder alongside a drug or alcohol addiction can benefit from ecotherapy. You may find yourself awakening positive feelings and emotions that you’ve forgotten for a long time. Many people find themselves more able to absorb the recovery lessons after taking part in an ecotherapy session.
Learn More at Red Oak Recovery
Our Asheville, NC rehab center helps clients dealing with various substance use disorders. Ecotherapy has proven helpful to people dealing with issues like: