As the Founder of Wilderness Renewal (WR), Dr. Michael Meredith suggests, each of us has an unlimited “extra dimension” capable of orchestrating realignment in our thinking and subconscious for the purpose of resolving self-defeating thoughts, self-talk, decisions, and behaviors. Operating within the wilderness areas of North America, Wilderness Renewal LLC facilitates adventure treks with the primary goal of accessing each participants “extra dimension”, thus embarking on an individualized journey of change through self-discovery, self-actualization, and self-renewal.
In the WR model, change is based on the concept that our thoughts drive our feelings and our behaviors, and if we change our thinking we change our feelings and behaviors as well. Unlike therapies which are by large measure open ended, crisis driven and require countless “sessions”, or self-help groups that require acceptance and daily application standards that often do not resonate for a client, cognitive behavioral renewal (CBR) is individualized and focused on developing skills and strategies to help people make themselves better on their own, using their untapped strengths and knowledge that are often buried in that “extra dimension” of our humanity. Once skilled in the CBR model, clients are no longer dependent on a therapist or the ritual of self- help programming. Individuals find themselves on a path to self-sufficiency using their renewed thinking processes and knowledge of who they really are to make self-enhancing decisions on their own.
CBR in the wilderness environment does not incorporate a strategy of telling participants how they should think or feel, but rather encourages them to discover this for themselves and improve on their own use of new thinking’s crafted by their desire to change. The way we approach “thinking” at WR is framed in the concept of clearing the mind through the exhaustion and excitement of wilderness trekking, and allowing participants to recognize the source of their difficulties and problems on their own. We do not suggest what the participant’s problems are, or where the problems originated, or how they might resolve them. Through the course of trekking we encourage the concept of “free form renewal and resolution”, whereby clients look for metaphors and journal about their life circumstances, highlighting their self-defeating thinking and behaviors as part of their life’s path and what their respective meanings may be. As the free form renewal continues, client centered solutions for past, present and recurring problems begin to gestate and develop texture. Renewal and resolution soon begin to form, driven by the awakened critical thinking skills. During each trek, WR staff act as guides and life coaches providing companionship and conversation of meaning.