Walk and talk therapy is a mindfulness-based body oriented therapy that can make it easier for clients to relax, stop over thinking, release physical tension, breathe deep and receive mind-body insight while processing experiences in a different way. As the name describes, clients talk while walking outdoors rather than sitting in a therapy office. Walking side by side rather than sitting face to face enables some clients to feel more comfortable when sharing in the therapy process. Walk and talk therapy requires an initial intake counseling session conducted in office or via online therapy.
Walk and Talk Therapy FAQs
Where do we walk?
Simply – we meet and start to walk. If we meet at the East Beach office, we can walk through the neighborhood, along the marina or on the beach. You can also choose to meet at the Norfolk Botanical Gardens (please note these sessions need to be made in advance). In Williamsburg we can choose to meet in the historic district along Merchant’s Square or at one of the many walking trails such as Waller Mill, Freedom Park or Jamestown Beach. Again, please note the session locations need to be booked in advance.
What happens in a walk and talk therapy session?
Walking side by side, we’ll discuss what comes to mind for you that day in the context of your overall goals, just as if we were sitting inside an office. At times we might take a few moments to stand in silent reflection, deep breathe or sit in guided visualization. By the end, you’ll have gained some understanding, let loose a little and noticed a helpful shift in your level of stress and anxiety.
How can walk and talk therapy help me?
Walk and talk therapy offers an opportunity to reduce stress, relieve body tension, improve circulation, breathe deep and clear the body-mind of intrusive, negative and ruminative thoughts and sensations. These sessions can help decrease anxiety, regulate mood, enjoy more restful sleep and more. Additionally, you can receive the feel-good brain chemical benefits of exercise, mindfulness practice and eco-psychology. In session, you can enhance insight, release body trauma and alter behavior patterns while verbally processing your authentic truth.
Do I have to choose between walk and talk therapy and online therapy?
Not at all. Walk and talk therapy requires an initial assessment session conducted via online therapy or in office. As a Relationship Center client, you are welcome to take advantage of any therapy offering that can help you move forward with your goals. When we schedule our appointments, we will discuss the type of session you would prefer.
I'm not outdoorsy. I don't hike. Won't I hate this?
It hasn’t happened yet. We will meet at a location that works for you, for a duration that is as long or as short as you require. As in all forms of psychotherapy, the verbal processing of thoughts, emotions and memories can induce uncomfortable feelings and intense emotions. If this is your experience, we are there for you and can talk through the emotions that emerge.
I don't want to get sweaty. Will that be a problem?
The movement in these sessions is easygoing, designed to facilitate the psychotherapy process. Your walk and talk therapy experiences are created just for you, reflecting your goals, interests, and state of being at the time we meet. You set the pace and we follow your lead. If we meet at the office you will have the opportunity to change clothes and/or use the facilities.
Can I bring my dog to our walk and talk therapy session?
Yes, in most cases. When and where we will meet, the length of our session and your dog’s personality and temperament will be considered in determining which if any sessions are appropriate for your dog to attend. We ask that if you want to bring your dog please discuss with your therapist prior to the appointment.