Burntisland woman Alison Smith is helping people to overcome their problems by using nature to find the solution.
And she is going back to nature to launch her new self help book Can’t See the Wood for the Trees this weekend, with sessions exploring some of the different scenarios at a few of her favourite writing spots in Fife.
Alison (55), has lived in Burntisland for 14 years since coming to Fife when her work as a coach/trainer with the Halifax Bank of Scotland brought her to Edinburgh from Yorkshire.
Two years ago she decided to set up her own business as a life coach and her first published book is already gathering interest in America and Australia where it was launched last month.
“The aim is to help people help themselves get unstuck,” she explained. “It is about using metaphors from nature to help them get back on track; so if they feel they can’t see the wood for the trees then it takes the problem quite literally and asks them to picture themself in that exact situation and how they would tackle the problem – using a map, cutting back branches, clearing a path... Nature is the coach.
“People see the sayings as a throw away line but what the book says is that, before you write it off, consider how it would be if the landscape could help you find the solution.
“Different chapters of the book tackle different situations, like making a mountain out of a molehill or sticking your head in the sand, and it looks at the sayings and how to use them towards a solution.”
And she says that taking the sayings literally caused a bit of surprise when she was down on a local beach and noticed a big hole in the sand.
“I thought to myself it was a great photo opportunity and I asked a man walking his dog on the beach if he would take a photograph for me.
“He assumed I meant a nice shot of me with the water in the background and got a bit of a shock when I got down on my hands and knees and stuck my head in the hole in the sand!
“I have also caused a bit of interest when I took my seat down to the beach in Kirkcaldy and sit down and started writing in among the rock pools.”
Most of Alison’s book was written on local beaches and woodland, and she decided it would be good to hold the launch at some of the locations.
She will be at Aberdour lighthouse on Saturday at 11.30am; Burntisland beach at 1.30pm and Kirkcaldy’s Seafield beach car park at 3.30pm and anyone interested can go along to find out more.
Can’t See the Wood for the Trees, priced £16.99, will be available from Waterstone’s in Kirkcaldy, The Green Witch in Aberdour and Reflections in Burntisland.