Creative Therapy Techniques: (Psychodrama, Art, & Sandtray)
Creative techniques help clients express their true feelings and experiences on a deeper level since for many individuals and families, it is surprisingly easier to tell one’s story through actions or visually instead of talk therapy.
We naturally censor our words, yet our body language usually tells the truth. These “out of the box” therapeutic approaches may also encourage clients to identify and address hidden or subconscious issues.
Some researchers have shown that one session of a creative therapy technique, ex. “empty chair” can be equal to eight talk therapy sessions! These techniques are cathartic, powerful, and even fun!
One Adult’s Experience with Sand Therapy…
I don’t have to talk. With the sand box, I don’t have to struggle to verbally express my feelings. I do a lot of talking in therapy- so its nice to be quiet and still receive therapeutic benefits. As I create in the sandbox, more ideas and memories come to me- I can turn the memories and feeling into something tangible!
It’s a different way to connect to your loved one. Instead of always connecting via the images in my own head, now there is substance to my thoughts.
It’s more than just a visual representation of how I am feeling, because it’s a 3D Creation. I can bury things in the sand, make piles and holes in the sand, and the objects are all tangible.
The touch and placing of objects is really important. I think the way I place things adds more refinement to my message, and overall meaning to the creation.
Sometimes it helps me think of the words I need to express myself. When I don’t know where to start, it gives me a start.
I like that I don’t plan it. I just pick the objects that jump out at me, then lay them out and see what happens. It’s not planned! And I like being a little surprised with each creation.
In the adult world, you rarely have the chance to be creative and express your thoughts in other ways besides writing and talking (which can feel repetitive and confining).
It feels like a chance to not take myself too seriously.
I like identifying with some of the objects. For example, the little guy with the hat and his forehead on his knees, the gems and candles for optimism, the lion with the pompoms and party hat that I think my dad would like.
I feel a shift in focus. Maybe it’s a shift from trying to express myself to another person, and just expressing myself for the sake of doing it. And it doesn’t have to make sense to anyone.