The 4 for You: Outdoor Therapy for Teens with Low Self-Esteem

Being surrounded by nature is a place that is conducive to healing. Outdoor therapy for teens with low self-esteem can be extremely beneficial. Low self-esteem can present itself in many different ways depending on the individual. With low self-esteem, teens may find it difficult to navigate themselves socially. The teenage years can be tough. Adolescents are in their prime developmental years experiencing many hormonal changes. Along with these changes, they are trying to discover who they are and where they fit in. Lack of self-esteem can make this period much more challenging. Your teen may not want to talk to you about how they are feeling—this is normal.

Benefits of Outdoor Therapy For Teens With Low Self Esteem

Outdoor therapy may be the best option for your teen as it can offer many benefits to helping your child improve their self-esteem. Here are some ways in which outdoor therapy for teens with low self-esteem is helpful. 

  1. Emphasis on outdoors. The outdoor component alone of this type of therapy is great. A lot of times, the chaotic and overwhelming setting of school contributes to a teens’ emotions. Being outdoors allows them to unplug from their everyday environment and the pressures of social media and focus on themselves. The natural environment has proven to be extremely conducive to experiential learning and growth. 
  2. Putting self-esteem in action. Adolescents are given the opportunity to work on their self-esteem through the outdoor activities that they will take part in. The outdoor activities may be challenging or require students to step out of their comfort zone. This is all part of the experiential learning process. Once the student achieves success, they will reflect and gain a new sense of self-confidence. 
  3. Individualized care. While outdoor therapy does take place in a group setting, there is one-on-one time too. Students are able to learn to better work with others and communicate. But they also get individualized therapeutic sessions with professionals to confront their unique needs. This is where students are able to reflect on their growth and the things they need to work on. 
  4. The transferable tips. The beauty of outdoor therapy is that it is more than just “outdoor stuff”. Students will learn things that they can use in all corners of their lives when they return home. The activities are designed to provide students with useful skills and learning experiences that will create long lasting changes. 

Trails Carolina can help

Trails Carolina is a wilderness therapy program that helps teens ages 10-17 who are struggling with behavioral and emotional issues. This program uses adventure-based therapy to help students gain a new sense of self-awareness, confidence, and independence. The skills they learn throughout the wilderness program offer long-term benefits towards their ability to successfully self-navigate in the real world. By removing teens from their fast-paced environment into a safe, nurturing, and peaceful environment, they are able to focus on improving and reflecting upon their behavior. Trails Carolina gives students the tools they need to lead happy and healthy lives. We can help your family today!
Contact us @ 800-975-7303

Avatar of Jeremy Whitworth

Jeremy Whitworth

As Executive Director at Trails Carolina, a leading wilderness therapy program for youth and teens, I oversee operations and collaborate with our leadership team. Since 2022, I've also hosted the Common Ground Podcast for parents: With a background in Wilderness Leadership and Experiential Education, I've managed adventure-based therapeutic programs across the US and Canada. My experiences in competitive athletics and adventure sports have honed my leadership, risk assessment, and decision-making skills, which I apply to running a successful business like Trails Carolina.

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Trails saved my daughter’s life. Amanda is an amazing human and a brilliant therapist. I am so grateful to her, Science Steve, and the other wonderful people who could reach my daughter at a time when I could not.

Margot Lowman August 2022

Great life changing experience for our son. After becoming addicted to gaming during covid he was very depressed. At Trails he experienced the wilderness, Science Steve, learning survival skills and top notch therapy and support etc… I highly recommend! This gave our son and our family a renewed family bond full of love and excitement about his bright future.

Winnifred Wilson July 2022


Outstanding clinical work and superb staff! There’s a great culture at this company and it shows with how they engage with families/clients.

Kristin Brace June 2022


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Trails Carolina’s wilderness camps for troubled teens are dedicated to helping teens work through behavioral or emotional difficulties, build trusting relationships with their family and peers, and achieve academic success.