The first session with a new client is often the most important; not only can it set the tone for how the practitioner-client relationship will develop, but many clients decide whether to continue working with a new professional by the end of that initial encounter. One of the ways you can help a client feel more comfortable and respected is by using the intake form to familiarize yourself with them. After all, few things make a client feel worse than when their therapist can’t even remember their name!
You don’t have to wait until you’ve developed a long-term relationship with your client to start bringing ecopsychology into the equation. The simplest way to do this is to include a question or three about the client’s relationship to nature in the intake form. Clients are often encouraged to talk about their relationships to other human beings, be they friends, family, coworkers, etc. But what about relationships to the non-human parts of their world?