June 21, 2024

Looking for an escape from your busy and demanding life?

Coaching in nature provides a restorative and refreshing experience. Throughout the spring and summer months, I offer full coaching days in nature in the Surrey Hills and Seven Sisters valley

How often do you unplug in nature?

Many of us don’t do it often enough. But what better time of year as we move into summer, the seasons of renewed growth, light, beauty, and abundance.

Our modern lifestyle has become increasingly complex and demanding. Most of us are “on” all the time, exposed to a constant flow of information and in doing mode, giving ourselves very little time away from any electronic devices. And yet, to feel well and to do well long-term, we need time out from doing, to just be, to restore and to calm our nervous system.

Do you immediately think: "But I haven’t got time to unplug" whilst also craving for more time and space in your life? Time just for you, freedom, perspective and ease?

At the heart of unplugging lies a paradox. When we feel busy, full up, tense and on all the time, we don’t like it and we want to do everything to get rid of the pressure and tightness and so we work harder, do more. We tense the body and contract the mind like a tight fist which makes things worse.

What we really need to do is pause, slow down, unplug. When we slow down, take time out, we speed up, create more time and space. That’s the paradox because it feels counterintuitive.

Amongst the top five things that neuroscientists speak of as vital for our mental and physical health is regularly spending time in nature. The other four being enough sleep, healthy food/enough water, exercise and social connections (Lisa Feldman Barrett/Andrew Huberman, 2023).

I know this to be true based on my own experience. When I’m in nature, I’m happiest and at my best. From a young age, I have spent as much time as possible outdoors enjoying how alive and grounded it makes me feel. It’s in nature, on longer walks that I have my most creative ideas, that I can see a little further into my life. Spending time in nature helps me to reconnect with myself when I feel out of sorts, upset, anxious or unsure about something. In connecting with nature and to something bigger than myself, I find a way back to my senses and to a deep-set feeling of ease and contentment; to what most matters in my life.

This is why I work with my coaching clients outdoors in London, and offer full coaching days in the countryside. Being in nature helps clients to unplug and feel the demands of daily life melt away. The experience gives clients the time and space to reflect, to take a fresh perspective, and to discover what matters most.

I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in
— John Muir, naturalist and author

As human beings we long to come back to our senses and to feel a connection with the natural world. Nature ignites and stimulates us in a very different way than the stimuli of everyday life. Nature captures our attention involuntarily, it happens effortlessly and it provides what’s been coined as a ‘restorative environment’ (Rachel and Stephen Kaplan, The Attention Restoration Theory). The wonder of nature inspires us, while allowing us to simply 'be'.

"When I work with clients outdoors, I observe the restorative effect of nature all the time. When we start a session and enter nature, clients often make a sigh of relief, open their gaze, slow down and seem to relax instantly. The outer space creates more inner space for the conversation to unfold with ease, curiosity and safety. It all makes sense because as human beings we long for experiences that connect us with the natural world, our very place of origin."

Further research into the benefits of spending time in nature has shown clear links to improved cognitive functioning and concentration, greater levels of attention, enhanced positive emotion and creativity, improvements in mental and physical health and quicker recovery from stressful situations (Alex Burn/Jonathan Passmore, 2022).

Allow yourself the time and space to find perspective and freedom

It's for everyone who feels overwhelmed, stressed or tired with any aspect of their life

A coaching day in nature is for people who want an opportunity to order their thoughts and feelings, to gain perspective, and to restore a sense of balance

Choose a self-care day in nature like no other

It's for professionals who are craving a moment to unplug, but don’t feel they have time for a day off

It's a day where every detail is taken care of in advance, so leaders can relax, breathe and focus their energy on themselves and their next steps

Choose to invest in your life, your career and your future
Life coach Karen Liebenguth sitting on a bench with a client in Hampstead Heath, London. The photo is taken from behind, and the backs of the people are in shot, with trees, clouds and the city skyline in the distance

Green space and fresh air: Nature helps us to reconnect with ourselves