Art Therapy: When Words Are Not Enough
Ever had a hard time explaining how you feel? Every human being on earth experiences this now and again. Art allows us to express ourselves when words fail to describe the complex ideas and emotions we experience. The process of art-making taps into the quiet, reflective parts of our mind that are often overshadowed with the business of our daily lives. Making art also gives voice to emotions we haven't been willing to acknowledge in a safe, satisfying, and sometimes surprising way. Artwork lets us live our fantasies in a way that is safe from negative repercussions. Lastly, artwork acts as the "external object" in therapy, giving individuals a safe third party to reference while discussing negative emotions. In other words, its less threatening to discuss and explore one's feelings in terms of a piece of artwork than in direct relation to oneself. You do not have to be an artist to benefit from art therapy.
You're probably familiar with the concept of talk therapy- talking with your therapist to work through complex emotions and solve problems, but there are many styles of talk therapy. Here are some of the types of talk therapy that we draw inspiration from:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Just as a physical therapist or personal trainer would guide a client through a regiment of exercises and technique to improve physical well-being, our clinicians use time-tested practices to train your brain, emotions and behaviors towards your personal goals. Utilizing worksheets, behavioral tracking at home, and personal journaling, as well as recognizing rewards and consequences, you and your therapist create a plan and measure the improvements each week.
Your therapist works alongside you to help you evaluate your situation in life, and by asking specific questions, helps you determine where exactly you want to go in life. This technique is especially helpful when you are unsure whether you want to change your life.
You and your therapist work through the big questions of life: "Why are we here?" "What is it all for?" "How are we to live in the face of our inevitable demise?" Our clinicians do not present any specific theology, but can assist in helping you explore your own personal spiritual, religious, or humanistic beliefs (or lack thereof!) to answer these very deep, personal questions in order to find more meaning in your own life. We draw story, metaphor, multicultural theologies, and science to aid you in this exploration.
Hypnotherapy: A Boost of Willpower from Your Unconscious Mind
Utilizing the powers of imagination, visualization, and a state of VERY deep relaxation, you and your therapist will gain access to your deep unconscious mind to bring it on board with the goals you have set for yourself. No, we won't have you quacking like a duck (unless that's your bag), but rather, hypnotherapy can remove subconscious blockages that are creating difficulty in moving forward or making progress where other, conscious, efforts have stalled. The best part? A stress-reducing "massage for the mind" that leaves you feeling so relaxed and recharged, and rejuvenated.
Mindfulness, Meditation, & Nature Therapies
The centuries-old healing practices of the East are finally becoming mainstream in the West (and it's about time!). In fact, an entire style of therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy or DBT, focuses primarily on teaching these skills. Although these skills are simple in theory, many people in this busy day and age have a lot of difficulty in gaining benefit from them. Your therapist can work with you to to develop a practice that fits best into your lifestyle, and in using these skills, you will be better able to manage emotions, focus your attention, and bring balance into your life.
Parts Work (Internal Family Systems)
Have you ever felt like you were getting in your own way? Like a part of you wants to move forward, but another part is holding you back? You're not alone. We all have different "parts" that work together (or against!) each other in what can be described as an "internal family system". Utilizing the types of therapies above, we work to recognize the many different aspects to our personality, and then dialogue with, negotiate with and embrace all of our many Parts. We learn to love all of our Parts, while realizing that we are not any single Part, and moving closer to our own inner centers of wisdom which are our best guides.
Pokemotions (Individual or Group Sessions)
Meeting children in their area of enthusiasm, Pokemotions utilizes Pokemon, the popular card game, art therapy, group discussion and weekly challenges to assist children in achieving the following goals:
Explore healthy competition and graceful winning & losing
Improve verbal communication skills
Address emotions and offer opportunities for safe and empowering self-expression
Enhance ability to negotiate and compromise with peers
Utilize creative problem-solving to solve challenges
Brief Solution-Oriented Trauma Therapy (BSOTR)
BSOTR is an essential skill for getting clients un-stuck from the paralysis caused by any kind of trauma (including childhood abuse and neglect). Traumatized clients are unable to learn and practice new, healthy thinking and behavior, which manifests in lengthy, frustrating therapy that goes around in circles. BSOTR is a one-to-two session powerful intervention that extinguishes trauma on the somatic level, clearing the way for new cognitive and behavioral learning. Thus, resolving trauma is the foundation for establishing healthy self-parenting.
This therapy technique is used to erase the effects of trauma from the body's memory (flashbacks, nightmares, repetition compulsion, startle reaction) in just a few sessions. This healing method opens the way for learning - and practicing - new coping mechanisms - and the world ceases to be a field of triggers. BSOTR can be used with children, and it also can be incorporated into the process of couple's therapy, where the process is stuck due to one or both partners' history of trauma.
The Chrysalis is Dr. Len Ochs' 4th generation self-adjusting NeuroVascular feedback system. The feedback enables the restoration of one's compromised functioning and the expansion of awareness and consciousness. The Chrysalis feedback provides the opportunity for people to become free from the effects of past traumas (both physical & emotional). When the effects lose their grip, the noise in our heads quiets. We stop feeling anxious and fearful. We find ourselves focusing and concentrating effortlessly. We stop avoiding, circumventing, procrastinating. We no longer need to, because those things we hadn't been doing, are no longer too hard. We see the world and ourselves with deeper clarity. We become more vital. At Art and Soul, we pair Chrysalis treatments with therapy plans to enhance the work we do and assist with personal growth more effectively.
Learn more directly from Dr. Ochs at https://www.lenochsphd.com/about-chrysalis.
Mightier Biofeedback- Video Game Therapy
Using a heartrate monitor, kids (and adults, too!) play games that simulate stress. As your heart rate increases, the games get harder until they are impossible to play. In order to continue, you must pause, and practice calming your body with various techniques (such as taking deep breaths). When this is done regularly, the body learns to automatically calm itself in stressful situations, thereby keeping the entire brain functioning to help us make good behavioral choices. Clinically-validated results!
Learn more about Mightier here: https://www.mightier.com/how-it-works/program/
The Fisher Wallace Stimulator® helps the majority of patients rapidly overcome depression, anxiety and insomnia. The device is indicated by the FDA to treat depression, anxiety and insomnia and works by stimulating serotonin production, alpha wave production and the brain's default mode network while lowering cortisol (the stress hormone). Used at home for 20 minutes per day, it reduces or eliminates symptoms for the majority of patients within the first week of use. Learn more about this system here: https://www.fisherwallace.com/