Getting out of one's familiar environment makes it possible to change perspective on the difficulties in life, which in turn can make change possible. If you change environment, you change focus. This is one of the reasons why wilderness therapy is an exciting treatment option.

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Here you can read a new post from Espen Holmgren, the man behind the Norwegian wilderness therapy organization, Norsk Mestring. He writes:

Many young people are struggling and the numbers are constantly increasing. Even though the knowledge about mental health is getting better and the number of help offers increase, the number of people who are struggling is increasing. 

The reason for this is difficult to determine. In any case, I believe we must acknoweledge that "medicine" cannot be the same as the "disease". If someone is sitting inside playing data, maybe being outside can be more effective than sitting inside an office talking about gaming. One treats a "modern" problem with something "old-fashioned". 

Nature experiences can actually compete with well-developed computer games and drug experiences in many ways, especially for those who has not used nature much before.  

Experiences combined with psychotherapy and physical activity can be a more powerful package than just psychotherapy.  

  

Therapy in the wilderness

Getting out of one's familiar environment where problems are and have arisen is an important factor in wilderness therapy (i.e., Norwegian: villmarksterapi).

Taking a journey far away from the problems then has to go into them to get a different perspective in a completely different environment creates effects. If you change environment, you change focus.

Therefore, being in a wilderness far from suburban areas but at the same time in a safe environment with professional outdoor people and therapists is a factor that our participants appreciate and which has proven to be effective.

In the wilderness, the absence of noise is also very obvious, which makes it easier to get in touch with oneself and what is really the problem.

 

Unprejudiced environment 

Nature is open-minded. It does not care what you look like or what mood you are in. But it is also fair. It also requires that you relate to it exactly as it is. It expects to be taken seriously. If you do, nature is the best teacher there is. This will have an important transfer value to the rest of your life.

Today there are many who say that "I have an ownership of nature". In my opinion, you can not. Nature does not belong to us. We belong to it.  

We bow to nature and the forces of nature. It is when you play on a team with nature that you can adapt to any situation and weather condition. If you try to beat it, accidents can happen quickly, something that history has shown time and time again.

- This post was originally written from Norsk Mestring

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Written by

ove heradstveit

Ove Heradstveit

Psychologist, specialist in clinical community psychology. PhD.
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