ABOUT EXPRESSIVE THERAPIES
Creativity is like freedom. Once you taste it, you cannot live without it. It is a transformative force, enhancing self-esteem & empowerment.
Expressive therapies involve moving into the interior landscape of the self, letting go of time & thoughts, while opening space for allowing what lives inside to express itself in a way that is informed by that which seeks to be expressed. This may involve expressive arts that are: visual (painting, collage work, sculpture, or watercolors for example); movement (body-sculpting, authentic movement, or dance for example); sound-making (music, breathwork, or drumming for example); theatre (enactments, performance art-making, or film-making for example); or that which is literary (journaling, poetry, or haiku for example).
This process is accompanied by the presence of a witness who seeks to both be in the process, fully present, while contributing in whatever way will serve the process that is unfolding. Talk or conversation is involved, but takes on a less primary role than in traditional talk therapy.
This work trusts that our bodies & these interior landscapes of symbols & forms hold resources that serve our healing & overall development as human beings. This way of working in therapy accesses the core of what lies in us that has suffered & also that which is creative & promotes healing. Engaging in expressive arts may produce change more quickly because of this. Another way of languaging this could be something like: the parts of the brain that are most affected & require the most change for healing to occur do not include much of what is involved in language. Additionally, the parts of the brain that are most involved in creativity, self-soothing, & feeling whole & connected to oneself, others, & the natural world, are also those that do not predominantly involve language. Diving into the expressive arts literally provides us with access to an enormous landscape of resources for healing & creativity. When accompanied by those we love such as with a partner, in family work, or in small groups, the ingredients for optimizing development & promoting healing is potent.
In addition to these considerations engaging in expressive arts can be & usually is pleasurable. This practice often produces not only preferred change with any problems in living an individual, couple, or family may be suffering from, but also the way in which problems themselves are viewed. There is a lightening of the experiences involving what we call problems that can be transformative itself.