I host regular courses on Mindfulness in nature and within a woodland setting. Upcoming dates for my courses can be seen below. If you would like to enquire about making a private group booking for a course then please get in touch.
My courses are usually hosted in the beautiful grounds of the National Trust’s Erddig and Chirk Castle estates in North-East Wales. Here there are woodlands, parklands, meadows and miles of footpaths for my students to get immersed in a natural surrounding. However, I am open to hosting courses at other locations. Just ask.
Nature Connection for Health and Wellbeing
April 13th & May 4th 2019
Join us around the campfire amoungst the beautiful woods and parkland of the National Trust’s Chirk Castle estate in North Wales for relaxing days of learning in nature, surrounding yourself with like-minds.
Whether this course is the beginning or continuation of your journey to a stronger connection with nature it’s an opportunity to immerse yourself in two days of activites aimed at fostering your deeper understanding of and empathy for the natural world. You will be guided by tutors each with their own specialities and experience in their field. The aim of this course is to explore self, discover nature and build community. You will take away a range of practical techniques which you can use in your everyday life to build your connection with nature and improve your health and wellbeing.
What We Can Learn from Nature
As we take a journey along the wild path we can let nature be the mirror to our souls. We can nurture ourselves by drawing inspiration and lessons from nature, recognising established ecosystems such as woodlands which demonstrate resilience, diversity, and longevity as well as cooperative relationships. Through spending time in and studying nature we can learn to establish these same qualities and to continue to grow as human beings. Nature creates ideal conditions to thrive and by observing this, we can apply natural principles to our own lives. We can also draw from the 3 core permaculture principles of earth care, people care and fair share to aid this connection to support our individual growth and resilience.
As we learn about nature and learn to trust her in knowing what is best, we learn to trust in our own instincts and can move forward in life from a place of confidence and faith.
Activities will include:
- Outdoor meditations and sit spot practise
- Listen to and interpreting bird language
- Make your own tree essence
- Start your own Nature Journal
- Discover wild edibles growing around us that can nourish our bodies
- Grounding techniques & fox walking
- Deeper exploration of the 7 principles of mindfulness
- A permaculture approach to your health & wellbeing
- Giving thanks together
- Sharing food in the fire circle
- Identify native trees and plants
- Open up our senses to the natural world
- Celebrate Beltain, the celtic festival of creation and abundance
- Sow your own seeds
“Whatever we do, we must spend as much time as we can outside, engaging in nature, appreciating the wonder of the natural world around us. This will help us to stay grounded and keep us connected to the life force that sustains and nourishes us.” Glennie Kindred, author or Letting in the Wild Edges.
This course will take place over 2 seperate days, Sat 13th April and Sat 4th May. The second date’s actvities will be a further development and progression of what was learned on day one as you develop a deeper connection with nature. To get the full benefit of the course then learners should attend both sessions. If you are only able to attend one of these dates, do get in touch with us and we can discuss whether it would be possible for you to attend just one day, with a reduced ticket price.
Tickets are £110 per adult, which covers both days of the course. This course is open to adults only. Refreshments will be available throughout the day at our basecamp.
The Bigger Picture
Are you feeling despondent, anxious, even depressed about the state of the planet? Every day there seems to be another bad news story featuring deforestation, environmental damage, rising screen time or climate change. It can feel overwhelming leaving you not knowing what action to take. We believe the only way out of this mess is to raise our consciousness, join with others who will raise their awareness and together be the best version of our own selves and be a light to others. Ghandi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” The healing of the planet starts with a personal journey, so let’s rewild your life.
Mindfulness in the Woods: 1/2 day course at Chirk Castle, Wrexham
An introduction to Mindfulness with nature as an aid and stimulus for learners to improve their health & well-being through a stronger connection to ourselves and nature. I will take you through a range of activities aimed at giving students techniques which they can take forward to practise Mindfulness in their own time. All this will take place against the backdrop of the beautiful National Trust’s Chirk Castle estate with ancient woodland, deer parkland and footpath network.
The session will include; walking , body scans mindfulness exercises, nature awareness and nature connection.
This session is suitable for anyone over the age of 18. The class runs for 3 hours, from 10am until 1pm and costs £25 per person.
WHAT IS MINDFULNESS?
Mindfulness is a holistic approach to health and well-being.
“The term ‘mindfulness’ does not refer to a single practise but to a range of practise based approaches, seeking to focus an individuals mind and attention on breathing and patterns of thought as a mean to managing emotions, feelings, habitual patterns of behaviours and unregulated critical reactions to events.” (Leary & Tate, 2007)
Running through all these approaches and therapies we practice an increased ‘awareness’ of the self and the environment, ‘taking notice’ of the present thoughts and conditions, including one’s surroundings and how these impact on the body.
There is now a very large and growing literature evidencing the links between the natural environment and people’s general health and well being.
WHY RUN THESE SESSIONS IN THE OUTDOORS?
Environmental psychologists have insisted that the physical and psychological problems of modern society are associated with a disconnection between human beings and their natural environment.
Humans are ‘hard-wired’ through evolution to hold an emotional and psychological attachment to nature. Placing people apart from nature disrupts our connection with nature and can lead to negative impacts on wellbeing.
“Shinrin-yoku”, which can be defined as “taking in the forest atmosphere” or forest bathing, has been receiving increasing attention in Japan in recent years for its capacity to provide relaxation and reduce stress. Scientific studies have shown certain stress indicators, such as cortisol levels and sympathetic nervous system is lowered when time is spent in a forest as compared with an urban environment.
Mindfulness in natural settings is a growing movement and I am a firm believer in the power of nature to be therapeutic for everyone. My training as an Counsellor worked toward my long-term goal to incorporate nature therapy into my services. I am passionate about finding ways to increase the self-esteem of people and encouraging motivation through positive experience, shared enthusiasm and a nurturing environment.
Mindfulness in Nature: 5 week course
Starts Sat 6th Jan 2018. ENDED – New dates to be confirmed.
I will be hosting weekly sessions early in 2019. Nature is the key element here, over the five week period we will practice different Mindfulness and meditation exercises with the natural world being the focus. I will be teaching you a range of approaches to Mindfulness through the use of movement, observing nature and enjoying the outdoors.
For more information about this course just follow the link below to go to the Woodland Classroom website.
The course costs £85 per person, which includes all 5 sessions of the programme.
COURSE DATES: Dates to be confirmed.