How Forest Training can Benefit your Organisation: Containment

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Beyond being a wholesome new take on the obligatory team away-day, not to mention a refreshing alternative to paint-balling, how exactly can forest training benefit your organisation?

The concept of ‘containment’ is a useful one for explaining how forest training benefits organisations, and it is a concept taken from the domain of psychotherapy.

Containment names the space between a client and a therapist. 

For the therapeutic interaction to be a productive one, it is essential for there to be a sense of trust or safety preserved in that space. This allows the space to ‘hold’ the client, so they can move through emotions, gather insights and make positive behavioural adjustments in a comfortable and effective way.

Sounds good, huh?

In typical group working environments though, where competing priorities and demands often pull the attention and energy of the team in different directions, a sense of containment can sometimes be compromised. 

In some instances, like when there is an organisational culture of blame, a sense of containment could be said to be lacking altogether. 

Without enough containment, team members’ and the entire organisation’s ability to learn, grow and successfully adapt to environmental challenges is weakened.

Here’s a few reasons why:

  • If there’s not enough containment in the work environment, there’s likely to be an increase in negative emotions experienced by the team. Barbara Fredrickson’s ‘Broaden and Build Theory of Positive Emotion’ describes how negative emotions and the behaviours that they give rise to, can hamper resourcefulness, creativity and the ability to problem-solve – all of which are fundamental to business (and personal) success. 
  • Without a sense of sufficient environmental support, team members are less likely to persevere in the face of adversity.
  • In a low-containment environment where there is insufficient ‘head-room’ to digest difficult experiences. This means that less learning will occur and fewer improvements will be made.

A major factor in why forest training benefits organisations is that when teams spend facilitated time in nature, as a group and as individuals, they experience the creation of a strong container and a felt sense of containment. 

Clients’ consistently report that our forest leadership programme brings a sense of being anchored and secure. This leads to:

  • Insights into organisational challenges faced and ways to overcome them.
  • Enhanced communication.
  • Increased awareness around effective group working.
  • Strengthening the team’s cohesion and their ability to ‘pull together’.

Learn more about how our Forest Leadership Programme here. We could deliver something unforgettable for your next team away day. Speak to one of the team – you can contact us here.

Nature’s Nebuliser – Why spending time in the forest is good for you

If you go down to the woods today… (and spend two hours there)…. you’re sure of a a big surprise. Why are we reciting Teddy Bear’s Picnic?

Nature Nebuliser

Because of  proscar uk reason some research with big implications that we just don’t think is known about widely enough.

In March, lucky Light Box staff were in Japan interviewing medical researchers and forerunners in a field known as xalatan price authorize  ‘Forest Medicine.’

One of the many interesting things that we learnt was  careprost uk what ‘phytoncides’ do to humans. These are the plant chemicals that trees release into the air to protect themselves from bacteria, insects and fungi. They also act as signals that communicate with other tress.

Within these phytoncides are ‘terpenes’; nice smelling things with names like D-limonene (smells lemony), Alpha and Beta-pinene (smells piney) and Camphene (smells like turpentine).

It turns out that these chemicals in woodland air, if inhaled for just a couple of hours, affect human health, both physical and mental and cause:

  • Increased NK cells and activity (Natural Killer cells are white blood cells that attack viruses and cancers).
  • Increased activity of anti-cancer proteins
  • Decreased stress hormones
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Decreased negative emotion
  • Elevation of mood
  • Increased parasympathetic nervous system activity (causing states of relaxation)

The effects are both mobilize powerful and long-lasting – NK cell levels and activity remain elevated a whole month after a single visit to the woods, and research from the Department of Psychiatry at Japan’s Mie University shows D-limonene to be more effective than antidepressants.


So next time you visit some woods, while you breathe in that air, remember to really enjoy it and imagine all those terpenes getting drawn down into your lungs, like  a big dose of nature’s nebuliser.

And keep an eye out for Light Box’s Forest Leadership Development training coming in 2020. Any questions? You can click here to contact us.