Category Archives: Therapy & Medicine

Anxiety In the Wild: Wilderness Therapy

Do you feel as though you have run out of all resources for treating anxiety, trying medication, therapy, relaxation?

Well here is another technique that sounds like an amazing experience! The Aspen Achievement Academy is offering a Wilderness therapy program. In the wilderness, you will focus both on preventing anxiety attacks with a blend of therapeutic technique and hands-on learning and intervening when a student’s anxiety attack becomes overwhelming. In order to prevent anxiety from taking control, the staff and therapists at Aspen Achievement Academy teach teens many techniques including relaxation techniques, coping skills, mindfulness skills, emotional regulation and expression, and cognitive restructuring. At Aspen, you will receive help on learning to identify unhealthy coping mechanism and learning new coping skills. You will also keep your mind and body positively and closely connected through activities such as hiking, yoga, tai chi, and quiet meditation time.

While out in the wilderness, you may be faced with many fears and challenges; however, therapy happens on an ongoing basis through this program. When fears and worries arise, you are surrounded 24 hours a day by caring, supportive field staff and therapists who are there to help you practice new coping skills. The ability to overcome the fears builds up your self-esteem and gives you a sense of control in your life with better managing anxiety. Nature is sometime the best teacher. At the Wilderness Academy, there are no televisions, games, computers, or ipods; this allows you to face fears and use coping skills rather than escaping through technology. Nature is non-judgemental and allows you to learn through natural consequences. Teens at the academy will learn that while some things are in their control, others are not. So one can learn the skills for living in the moment rather than future thinking which is one of the main causes of anxiety.

For teens suffering from anxiety, prevention is helpful but not enough, intervention is critical in developing healthy skills to manage anxiety and symptoms. The Wilderness therapy program is an awesome opportunity to learn, build, and practice all of the skills taught and developed.  Check it out: http://www.aspenacademy.com/

By: Annyetta Keefe