Some psychological counselors have begun providing a service known as walk and talk therapy. This service has some advantages to consider over receiving counseling in a traditional office setting. Learn about these advantages and decide whether this type of therapy sounds appealing.
Benefits of Walk and Talk Therapy
Exercise Increases Endorphins
Exercise is a known mood enhancer. One reason is that exercise stimulates the production of endorphins by the brain's pituitary gland. Endorphins are hormones that function as neurotransmitters and actually have effects similar to morphine.
Walking Side by Side Feels More Natural
Walk and talk therapy can be helpful for someone who feels intimidated in a closed office setting while facing the counselor directly. Outdoors or in another walking venue, you and the counselor are side by side; this can feel like a more natural way of conversing about difficult subjects.
You Can Go Off by Yourself for a Bit
Outside of a therapist's office, you have the opportunity to take a few minutes and go off by yourself to think without feeling pressure to keep talking. That's helpful if you want to gather your thoughts or if you need a little time to regain your composure.
The Chance to Go for a Walk
For many people, just having the chance to go for a walk is welcome. You're accomplishing two things at once -- having your counseling session and also getting some exercise. Especially if you're cooped up in an office all day, getting on your feet for a stroll may be more inviting than going to spend another hour in a different office setting.
This type of therapy may not be as private as some people would like, since the conversation takes place out in the open. There may be a risk of running into someone you know. You may be required to sign a waiver saying you understand these aspects.
The weather probably won't always cooperate, so you may not always be able to walk outdoors. In addition, if your appointments are after sunset, you may feel more comfortable taking your walks indoors.
What You Can Do Now
If this type of service sounds intriguing, find out whether any counseling centers in your area offer walk-and-talk therapy. If you are drawn to a particular therapist who doesn't specifically mention this type of practice, ask whether they are willing to provide counseling while strolling through a park, around an indoor track or at another setting. For more information, speak to a counselor like Lynch Michael Ph.D.Share