Reconnecting with eco-therapy

As a counselor with a focus on eco-therapy, I was pleased to see Mountain Xpress address the important issue of nature deficiency disorder [“Reconnect,” Nov. 20 Xpress]. In addition to the programs mentioned in the article, WNC also has an initiative to promote eco-therapy in the area in order to counteract this disturbing disconnect.

The core belief of eco-therapy is that personal well-being and planetary well-being are not separate from each other. If we connect with the natural world in a deep and balanced way, we can experience physical and mental health, and care about the environment in a new way.

While eco-therapy is quite popular in Europe and in California, Asheville is one of the few spots on the East Coast with several counselors offering this relatively new and innovative method.

As the saying goes: Gardening is cheaper than therapy, and you get tomatoes. So, let’s all get out into the gardens, woods or parks, and if we feel that we need some extra help, know that Asheville also offers professional eco-therapy.

— Monika Wengler

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