According to the Anxiety Center, anxiety affects roughly 18.1% of adults in the U.S. That’s about 40 million men and women. Regardless of the cause, anxiety can be a crippling emotional state that leads to negative behaviors, such as avoidance and withdrawal from life. While there are various methods for coping, one way to alleviate anxious feelings is by being a little daring and partaking in some adventure therapy.
How Does Adventure Therapy Work?
Adventure therapy encompasses a wide range of activities but normally includes outdoor and physically-oriented activities. This may include outdoor ventures like hiking, camping, or bird watching. However, some people really take the word “adventure” to heart and think more along the lines of adrenaline-inducing activities like kayaking, rock climbing, hand gliding, and the like.
It’s believed that engaging in an adrenaline rush, especially with family and friends, is highly therapeutic and can help individuals overcome anxiety and depression.
The Benefits of Adventure Therapy
Many treatment centers are beginning to include some form of nature-based adventure therapy to their program. Patients that partake in such outdoor adventures in a collaborative environment have reported:
- Increased confidence
- Decreased anxiety and negative thoughts
- A greater tolerance for handling stressful situations
- Improved problem-solving skills and solving problems in the moment
- A greater sense of mind-body connection
- Improved social skills with existing family/friends and when meeting new people
How to Partake in Adventure Therapy
There are traditional treatment centers that incorporate adventure therapy into their curriculum. However, you don’t need to enroll in any formal program. You can book a flight to just about anywhere in the world and sign up for an outdoor activity. Need some examples? Consider these ideas:
- Running with the bulls in Pamplona, Spain
- Scuba diving in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef
- Dog sledding in the Whistler Mountain of Canada
- Zorbing in the hills of Rotarua, New Zealand
The many hurdles of life can induce stress in even the most resilient people. Adventure therapy is one outlet for you to release negative emotions. Many people who try it feel a greater passion and zest for life.