Wild Minds Podcast logo

Season 1, Episode 8:
Risk, Rest and Wild Play


Marina Robb

Hosted by: Marina Robb

In this last episode of Season 1, Marina looks at:

In this last episode of Season 1, Marina looks at:

  • Risk and vulnerability
  • Our need for rest and play
  • Not giving up on asking 'Why!'

Music by Geoff Robb: www.geoffrobb.com 

You may also like....

Subscribe to listen to your favorite episodes!


The Outdoor Teacher Ltd owns the copyright in and to all content in and transcripts of The Wild Mind Podcasts, with all rights reserved, including right of publicity.

You are welcome to share an excerpt from the episode transcript (up to 500 words but not more) in media articles, in a non-commercial article or blog post, and/or on a personal social media account for non-commercial purposes, provided that you include proper attribution and link back to the podcast URL. For the sake of clarity, media outlets with advertising models are permitted to use excerpts from the transcript per the above.

No one is authorized to copy any portion of the podcast content or use Marina Robb's name, image or likeness for any commercial purpose or use, including without limitation inclusion in any books, e-books, book summaries or synopses, or on a commercial website or social media site (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) that offers or promotes your or another’s products or services. 

(transcribed by AI so there maybe some small errors!)

Hello, and welcome to The Wild Minds Podcast for people interested in health, nature-based therapy and learning. We explore cutting edge approaches that help us improve our relationship with ourselves, others and the natural world. My name is Marina Robb, I'm an author, entrepreneur, Forest School, outdoor learning and nature-based trainer and consultant, and pioneer in developing green programmes for the health service in the UK.

You're listening to Episode Eight, Risk, Rest and Wild Play.

In this last episode of this season, I'm thinking about risk and vulnerability I need for rest and play, and not giving up on asking why. I was thinking last night about some challenges, and that I've been having with different people and thinking about how frustrated I felt and how annoyed these situations were making me. And then I kind of realised in a way that when these things happen, they helped me to reflect on myself and all my behaviour and the things that I can do to change myself. And even if I don't want to do it. And it kind of brought up the idea of risk and also vulnerability as a thread that we were talking about last week and thinking about children and risky play, but also risk in our lives, I wanted to just first think of just, I suppose give a bit of a kind of bit of that appreciation to the people that caused me this frustration.

And as you can see, I'm not totally 100% convinced, but I actually know that there is a lot of love in those challenges and in those relationships. And that's what takes me deeper into growing, I suppose. So with that said, risk, what is it about taking a risk. And for me this idea of being more vulnerable. And I realised that, actually, I have to know that, that I'm okay that I'm good enough that I am loved enough to feel that I can be vulnerable enough. And there's so much to that and the risk to step and be vulnerable with somebody who feels like they're hurting you.

Or saying something that's challenging is really difficult. And I want to acknowledge that and I want to acknowledge that in the work that we're all doing. And the work of holding groups where that risk isn't just about physical risk isn't just about you know, in my work using knives or building fires, or swings and all kinds of things that are seen by some to be very risky activities. Actually, I'm thinking about the risks of that relationship as well. And what it takes to step out of what feels comfortable or safe enough and move into a deeper relationship. And in that deeper relationships start to realise that that is okay. And they know I have supervision. And I know my supervisor, therapist for many years has always said actually, when you can dip into your vulnerability and speak from that place, then, in a way you're safer than you've ever been, because you are familiar with that you're familiar with your truth around that.

So risk is a big subject. And it's coming up a lot at the moment as well around people thinking that they need qualifications to do certain risky activities. And I've had having conversations with people that have been working in the guides or the scouts or have been doing outdoor learning or nature connection for many years and they didn't have qualifications and I had a conversation with an insurer just to kind of check their thinking and they were saying well know, you know, if you're going to go and do a qualification, it can be hard work, it takes a lot of time. And of course it has value, nobody is questioning that it has value or doesn't have value. But you don't need to have a qualification to do a lot of the things we're doing in our lives are risky.

And certainly when it comes to outdoor activities and practices, there's a lot more risky things happening out there. And actually, what we need to do is to have enough knowledge, enough knowledge, enough skills, enough sensible approaches to know that what we're doing isn't going to harm other people. And of course, there are a whole practices within health and safety law, like following risk assessments that really help us to do that, and having quality training to do that. But lives are risky, aren't they, I mean, we're not going to stop people going camping, who want to make fires, you don't have to go and do a massive training for that. But of course, if you're going to do that with other children, you need to know the things to look out for the things that you might miss, if you haven't had that training, so that training is really important.

It makes me also sort of think about how far we've moved from a culture where people would go off and play and explore with their friends or on their own for hours, and hours and hours. And there's this thing called the roaming radius, which has diminished by 90%. Over the last 50 or 60 years, I know that we spoke about that in a previous episode, and this idea of wild play, really just a name given to this thing that we many of us did, you know many of us went out and played on our own without anyone watching us in sites that we found, like areas, patches of green grass, or whatever we went out and we played and the question that I have is, what are we learning when we were doing that? What and what are we not learning by not providing that for children, by not trusting children enough in their competence to go and explore and have these social interactions and have these encounters where they have to figure it out for themselves what they're going to do next, and how they're going to manage a situation. And we need these experiences to do that.

When they love this idea that actually when we have space and time, something starts to happen. And the think in that is this question of our bodies, I've been listening to some YouTube information around this wonderful woman who's been working around this idea of rest is resistance. This whole I think her name is hanging on there. And I'll give you her name, if I can. Her name is Trisha Hersey (2022) And she's created this book called Rest is Resistance.

And it's really questioning this whole idea that we're in a culture that doesn't really support us to rest and take this very, very important time to do what feels nourishing for us not for the reason so that we're resting so that we can get up and then work and act and produce and do all these things but rest because it's our right it's absolutely our human right to rest and of course right alongside that comes this idea of rest and play these rights, these rights is a human right to be able to have that and in a way, what by not having that we come back to this idea of machine. And you know, this whole podcast holds that question around. What if, you know, wild was the normal? What if this and in a way wild feels like following our natural rhythms.

So when we need to rest, we pay attention to that our body tells us to that when we need to. And part of resting is this kind of active rest. What actually makes us feel good, whether that's, I don't know, crocheting or walking or dancing or live Listening to music or playing music or hanging out with friends, what actually gives us this quality of nourishment, which links to rest and, and the science is all saying there's diseases links linked to sleep deprivation, and of course stress in the body. So I'm bringing this up for contemplation, but also that we're now entering the season, the summer season, the ripening of the flowers, the flowers have, the petals are dropping, and we're now into the summer time. And it's a time when the flowers have had, as I said, the petals are dropping, and there's a ripening going on until the fruits arrive. And that's the autumn time.

So we're in a ripening time and what is it that we can ripen in our lives? What is it? What is it that we need to feed and nourish to ripen so that we can enjoy the fruits of that ripening. And to, to think about that, and I'm hoping that you get some time to nourish yourself in this time, because this is the last episode of this season before we begin again, at the end of August. And I wish you all a very restful summer where you can really enjoy some time. And also to not give up on the bigger why I've been thinking about this as well as an adult that has lots of why's, why? Why do we do it this way? Why are we not able to question things so easily?

I think this why that those children, those four-year-olds, those two years or three years, those four year olds are saying is at the heart of that natural curiosity about life and asking that why and I don't want to give up on my why? to question things to not kind of be stuck in the binary but to think about the why of the systems that we're living in the why? Why is it that I struggle to have rest?

Why is it that I have to keep on going and can't stop? All why's that come up? Even if I'm walking around and noticing something, you know why? Why does this plant grow here? And not over there? Why is this medicine working? What Why? Why don't we use more plants for our medicines?

Why is it that we have an education system that isn't valuing play, observation, time to follow their interests? You know, all the big why's and why is it that we're polluting our waters? Why is it that our systems can't be more balanced? And I know there are lots of you out there that will be going well, this is why and this is why and having these answers. But there's a lot to finding solutions, I think and this good word y can help us free us into paying more attention and opening our minds to other solutions. I really do believe there are lots and lots of solutions out there for lots of the problems in the wider world, but also in our personal lives.

And if we can stop. Notice. Pay attention, know that we're all worthy, that we don't have to do things to be worthy, that we are worthy. Our humaneness is our worthiness, all of us, no matter what colour no matter what background we have that and that that gives me hope. So I wish you well during this summer season, remember to take some rest and be kind to yourself and do not give up on the WHY. This is the end of season one.

Thank you so much for listening to me. We'll be back on the 28th of August where I will be joined by a psychiatrist, outdoor play and rewilding education experts and exploring regenerative approaches to farming, clothing, and education.

Thank you for listening to this episode of The Wild minds podcast. If you enjoyed it and want to help support this podcast, please subscribe, share and leave a rating and review wherever you get your podcasts. Your review will help others find the show.

To stay updated with The Wild Minds Podcast and get all the behind-the-scenes content. You can visit the www.outdoorteacher.com or follow me on Facebook at theoutdoorteacherUK and LinkedIn, Marina Robb.

The music was written and performed by Geoff Robb. See you next week. Same time, same place