It is amazing what the right location can mean for any kind of healing. Imagine the difference between your regular clinical white doctors office and a traditional Portuguese quinta. The freshness of the wild garden before you enter the house with its beautiful coloured floors. After a session you will not be kicked out onto a boring industrial parking lot, but you are always invited to hang around for a bit. Have a cup of tea or a glass of homemade iced tea. Stroll around the garden for a while and contemplate on what has been said during your session. And only when you are ready do you get on your way and face daily life with renewed energy.
In the south of the Algarve, hidden between Moncarapacho and Fuseta, lies our traditional Portuguese quinta. When my wife Michelle and I first walked into this house in 2011, we fell in love instantly. We were still living in Spain and decided to look for a quinta in the Algarve and this was the very first one we laid our eyes on. Never had I dreamed that this could happen, but I immediately felt at home. In the garden, sitting on a wall underneath the olive tree. In the house with its high ceilings and beautiful floors. On the courtyard where you feel sheltered and embraced. It is hard to explain, but even in its pretty run down state, it was clear that this was the one and only place for our plans.
Now, more than a decade and many renovations later, it is truly our home and creative work space all rolled into one. And we are lucky enough to share it with other therapists and clients from all over the world. Also, Michelle hosts vegetarian and vegan lunches and dinners for small groups and for me it is the perfect location to receive my coaching clients.
As an added bonus, we can use the larger surroundings of the quinta as well. On days when even the safety and cozy colours of our quinta don’t quite fit the bill of your needs, we can simply walk out of the garden and start on a walk through nature. I find that in walking, shoulder to shoulder, talking about life comes a lot easier than it does when sitting opposite each other.