Families in the Growth Zone



By Caleb Cottle | Added March 19

For months our students have been talking about the growth zone during recreational therapy.  The growth zone is an uncomfortable, progress inspiring place just outside the comfort zone, and right before the danger zone.  Students have had the privilege to feel the growth zone during physical activities such as the mile run.  As they race around the track trying to beat their best time it is tempting to stop once your lungs start burning and your legs get tired.  The truth is that if you dont push through that discomfort, you will never build the physical tolerance needed to improve. 

Sometimes growth hurts a little bit, and that is a good thing.  Therapy follows a similar pattern.  It is comfortable to sit in an office with your therapist and talk about superficial topics that require little vulnerability.  Unfortunately this will never help you come to a greater understanding of who you are, and what you are worth.  The process of trusting another human being with your sincerest fears and opinions can be quite terrifying.  It hurts to take that kind of emotional risk.  Again, the wonderful truth is that if you will push through that discomfort and take those emotion risks with safe individuals, you will build the emotional tolerance to improve and increase your own self worth.

We are very excited to announce the upcoming parent retreat on May 13th 14th.  During this retreat families will have opportunities to explore their own growth zones and discover opportunities to strengthen and build relationships through experiential therapy.  We invite all parents of current students to plan on attending our first ever parent retreat and experience the increased intimacy within a family that comes from spending time and working together.  We hope to accomplish great things during this two day retreat and look forward to seeing you there.




About the Author

Caleb Cottle, B.A. Program Director

Caleb Cottle is the Program Director at CALO. As fortune would have it, ten years ago Caleb learned he could get paid to go camping. That was all it took to get him to Southern Utah working in a wilderness program with adolescents. It did not take long for Caleb to fall in love with the therapeutic process of change within an experiential environment. Since that time Caleb has worked in numerous treatment settings and held a variety of positions including field guide, front line staff, live-in staff, staff trainer, recreational therapist, and program director. Caleb has always believed in the power of experiential opportunities and the hands on lessons that they teach. While there is great power and insight in traditional talk therapy, experiencing the world and therapy experientially allows a multidimensional sensory experience that allows increased self-efficacy and improved self-concept. Caleb enjoys sharing these and other CALO principles with staff, students and those in the industry considering CALO as an option for their child. Caleb enjoys a variety of outdoor activities including fly-fishing, climbing, boating, camping and snowboarding. However, Caleb's greatest interests are his wife Raylene and their four children. As a family they enjoy many of these activities together. Having a family has taught Caleb the value, purpose and absolute joy of true friendship and safe relationships.

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