Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Stories from the Field: Mental Health and the Outdoors

Sep 8, 2020

Connor Boyle is the founder of Revival Wilderness Therapy located in New Hampshire. Connor shares his story of having a successful law career in Boston while suffering from anxiety/depression combined with alcoholism. He tried traditional residential treatment but it did not help. He shares how went to a wilderness therapy program at the age of 33 which was the "most impactful" experience of his life. He left his law career worked in behavioral healthcare and a wilderness program and then started Revival.

Connor's bio from Revival Website:

Born and raised in Littleton, NH, while the White Mountains were in my back yard, I could not have been further away from them.  Rather than embrace Nature, I chose a very achievement oriented path.  I graduated valedictorian from Littleton High School and then attended Bates College, where my primary objective was to prepare for law school.  And prepared I was for my law school career at Northeastern University, where I excelled as a law student.  After passing two bar exams I began my career as a corporate attorney.  And I also began to realize that there were no more goals to achieve.  No more exams to take.  No more teams to captain.  There was no more structure, and without externally prescribed structure, I was at a loss.  Depression and anxiety set in.  And substance abuse escalated alongside mental health issues, accompanied by an eating disorder.

I had been living my entire life wearing a mask.  A mask that I believed society wanted me to wear.  I had focused on fabricated external expectations.  I never once looked inside for what I was, for who I was.

That all changed when I got in the Woods.  I began working on myself - Mind, Body, and Spirit.  I learned that everything in life is impermanent except one's relationship with themselves.  And I realized that since we only get one lap, we better focus on what is important by our own standards, and not by those of an over-civilized, over-medicated, under-connected society.  And I realized that the best way to do that is through connection.  Through helping others connect.  With themselves, with a community, and with Nature.  Help me build a community by allowing me to help you build your connection to self.

Having studied health and wellness coaching through the Health Coach Institute, wilderness preparedness through SOLO Wilderness Medical School, and having worked in addiction recovery for years, I have the credentials and qualifications to bring you in to the Wilderness, keep you safe, and create a productive and valuable atmosphere for growth and catharsis.  But more importantly, having lived for years mired in a swamp of mental health crisis and substance abuse, I know what it is like to be where you are.  I know what it is like to feel like you are not you.  What it is like to feel like there is no way out.  What it feels like to be sad.  What it feels like to be depressed and anxiety riddled.  What it feels like to be hopeless.  What it feels like to feel nothing at all.  And I know what it takes to pull yourself out of the abyss. 

All the classes and courses have been valuable, but the life experience that I have walked through is what makes me the person that I am.  And it is what allows me to be compassionate, empathetic, and, maybe most importantly, allows me to understand as well as anyone else what it is like to feel the way you feel right now.  There is a way out.  Let me help you get there.