The focus of expressive arts therapy is on the therapeutic effect of the creative experience. You don’t always have to talk about your challenges to resolve them. Expressive arts highlights your capacity to transform thoughts, emotions, and experiences into tangible results.
Expressive Arts Therapy
Expressive arts therapy combines psychology and the creative process to promote emotional growth and healing. This multi-arts, or intermodal, approach to psychotherapy or counseling uses our inborn desire to create—be it music, theater, poetry, dance, or other artistic form—as a therapeutic tool to help initiate change. Expressive arts therapy is used with children and adults, as individuals or in groups, to nurture deep personal growth and transformation. For instance, expressive arts therapy for children with behavioral issues might include music, movement, or finger painting. I observe the child’s processes, behavior, and impulses, and then encourages the child to talk about the experience. Journaling, storytelling, reading literature and poetry, and making life maps, videos, and memory books are all forms of expressive art therapy that can help older clients review and make meaning of their lives, and to tell their life story, as well as help them engage with family and other significant people in their lives.
In expressive arts therapy, you use multiple senses to explore your inner and outer world through the experience and creation of different art forms. Your therapist or counselor helps you communicate your feelings about the process and accomplishment of art making, and together, you use the creative process to highlight and analyze your problems and issues. Since the therapeutic work is based on the creative process, not on the final result, it is not necessary to have a background or training in the arts to benefit from expressive arts therapy. Throughout the process, you learn new and different ways to use the mostly nonverbal language of creativity to communicate inner feelings that were not previously available to you by simply thinking or talking about them.
Reasons for Expressive Arts
Stress & Anxiety
mild Traumatic Brain Injury
Post Traumatic Stress
Getting Started is Easy
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Together we establish goals and a plan to tackle whatever life has thrown at you getting on the path to a more fulfilling tomorrow.
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