Burn the Boats

If you want to take the island, burn the boats.
— Julius Caesar

Not usually one for quoting generals in times of war, or ever, this quote has stuck with me after hearing it from my physical therapist while undergoing rehab for a significant shoulder injury/surgery this past fall. While Caesar meant it with regard to eliminating his navy’s escape route when attempting to conquer another country, the idea applies more broadly to the concept of full commitment, of clarity of purpose, of letting go of what might feel more safe or familiar in order to have the capacity to reach towards and take hold of the new direction with both hands. 

As I have grown more and more clear on my desire to connect groups and individuals with the natural world, to explore the co-occurring healing between the Earth and our nervous systems, I have decided that it is time to commit to more outdoor facilitation…. to burn the boat...which in this case is... the office.

Amidst many other significant changes in my life, some of which have been unintentional or unforeseen boat burnings, I am also moving out of my office-based counseling practice in Asheville to a more experiential, dynamic, and travel oriented version of Aspen Roots Collective. At the end of June ARC will hit the road and head west, and from there be offering experiences in a variety of locations including Alaska, Utah, Patagonia, Baja, and Asheville as well! Although this is a move of sorts, this is not an uprooting, and ARC will very much keep a presence in western North Carolina, even if I personally am only there sporadically. 

On the website you will now see more Rugged Renewal retreats, which are intended to be nature-based explorations of the flow between expansion and contraction, restoration and challenge. There is also a revamping of the counseling page to reflect the many offerings that correlate to this mobile practice: online sessions, outdoor session, and experiences designed to complement the therapy that an individual or group is already doing with another counselor. The rock climbing based retreat, Calm Mind:Strong Heart, has been expanded into a weekend as opposed to just one day, there is a week-long opportunity for other therapists and healers to learn about the cross pollination between somatic and nature-based healing, there is a new “guide” added to our inspiring crew, more community-based projects are in the works as well… but I’ll save that for another post. 

As the roots of this organization soak up more nutrients from rich and challenging life experience, the branches and leaves of vision and action continue to grow. This month marks three years since taking the plunge into private practice, and like everything else in life, myself included, Aspen Roots Collective is on a path of discovery and greater expression of its full self. I have such gratitude for the clients and retreat participants who have taken the risks in their lives that lead to powerful change, and I am inspired to continue doing the same.