As part of your work with Melissa Fritchle you may choose to do solo wanders in nature. This is sacred time & can be quite different than hiking or walking for exercise & being alone is a valuable aspect of it.
Some Safety Guidelines for Solo Time in Nature
Designate a contact person and notify this person where you will be wandering and when you expect to return. Carry your charged cell phone with you & be aware if cell service is not available in the area you will be wandering.
Make an intentional effort to make note of your surroundings as you go. Don't wear headphones. Pay attention to the terrain & animals or insects in the area. Make eye contact with other people you come across. It is best practice to stay on trails, both for your safety & for the protection of the environment.
Building connection with the natural world may include research into the other inhabitants that share your land. Knowing how to recognize poisonous plants or animals in your area is wise, as well as understanding some basics of animal or bird behavior.
Solo wanders are not the time to push your physical limits. Be aware of your pace & distance and stay within your capacity.
Be aware and mindful of people in the area who may be looking to harm you in some way. Trust your instincts. If you feel someone is watching you or making you uncomfortable move towards other people &/or return public areas. It may be wise to carry pepper spray or other defensive tools for protection from dangerous people and creatures.
No matter the weather when you head out, it's a good idea to bring along items to keep yourself protected in the event of changing circumstances such as- extra water, some snacks, layers & rain gear, lightweight emergency blanket, emergency whistle, flashlight or headlamp, sun protection, basic first-aid kit.
Remember these practices are for you to deepen in relationship to yourself, your fellow living beings, & the Earth. Mindfulness is the way into that shift in consciousness. Go slowly, think about your steps, listen. You do not need to go to a remote or difficult place to find the wild. It is within you, a way of perceiving. It can be in your own backyard.
Guidelines for Guided Outdoor Sessions with Melissa
Sessions in which we meet outdoors & utilize the natural world around us as guide & inspiration can include : walking in silence or in conversation, time when we split up & go solo for a bit, sitting in one place for the entire time. You can always decide what feels best for you that day & I expect that you will inform me of any limitations you have that day.
I will pick places to meet that are close to parking so you will have options for minimal walking if that is what is best for that day.
I will carry a basic first aid kit & a cell phone. My expectation is that you will use sun protection & wear protective shoes & clothing & carry some water for yourself.
Weather is a part of nature & is also a guide to for us to engage with. That being said, we will cancel outdoor sessions for significant rain or bad air quality & plan for zoom sessions those days. I will communicate about that the day before the session if possible, but be aware of the necessity for changing plans day of session sometimes.
My preference is that you do not wear sunglasses so that we can meet each other's eyes. You may want to have them with you for solo time or of glare is really bothering you. Hats are great for sun shade!
You are invited to follow your own instincts and ways you are called to participate with nature around you. I will do my part to inform you of risks as I see them but neither of us can know all of the risks ahead of time. Before we meet for outdoor sessions, I will ask you to sign an agreement for release of liability & to provide me with an emergency contact in case of any accidents while we are out together.