As a creative arts therapist, I approach therapy and treatment from an multidimensional perspective, including five basic rules:
- Every individual must be approached from a bio-psycho-social-spiritual perspective.
- Every individual experiences some form of trauma, loss, or grief in their life, as early as young adulthood, if not (tragically) sooner.
- Relationships and intimacy are essential to healthy functioning, regardless of age, race, gender, ethnicity, or cultural background.
- “Love,” “vulnerability,” and “spirituality” are not dirty words.
- The client must be a full participant in the process of treatment planning, and the therapist must be fully transparent with the client with regards to his or her treatment progress (even if it is hard to hear!).
Mindfulness and Creative Arts Therapy
In my practice, I like to play with metaphor, mindfulness, and energetic activation in the body, which includes surrendering to the moment and embracing what is without feeling pressured to change it.
Self-compassion is at the root of my therapeutic philosophy.
It is not about being solution-focused and producing for the sake of “getting results,” or “failing to launch” and waiting for the world to come to you; its about finding ways to act with informed intention towards a harmonious and loving acceptance of self.
Paradoxically, once you figure out how to slow down and pay attention to what’s going on inside you, you’ll be surprised at how fast everything else falls in to place outside of you!
While every individual’s treatment plan will be unique and specific to that person, I do have a number of existing directives and protocols specific to certain problem areas, such as sexual trauma, attachment disturbances, addiction issues, and complicated grief.
In the treatment planning process, we may review a few of these together and discuss which ones resonate with you, or simply allow what seems relevant to unfold organically.
Potential treatment directives may include but would not be limited to:
- Art making with a focus on process
- Movement or bodily activation such as focusing on breath or “embodying” your artwork
- Guided visualization exercises
- Personalized spiritual practices
- Writing exercises and keeping a journal
- Energy healing (Reiki)
- Singing bowl meditations and chakra balancing
To learn more about treatment and the intersections of trauma, brain research, attachment relationships, complicated grief and recovery, you can check out my book, Complicated Grief, Attachment and Art Therapy: Theory, Treatment and 14 Ready-to-Use Protocols.