"Drama therapy is the intentional and systematic use of drama/theater processes to achieve psychological growth and change."
~Dr. Renee Emunah, Ph.D, founder of the drama therapy program at CIIS
Okay. But what does that mean?
You do not have to be an actor (or even an extrovert) to participate in drama therapy. Drama therapy uses interactive exercises, imagination, movement, role play, storytelling, ritual, "empty chair", psychodrama or playback forms to help you to "get out of your head" and actively express yourself in a new way. It can help you to try on a "new role," rehearse a new behavior or difficult conversation, and develop a sense of play and spontaneity, which in turn helps you to problem solve with increased creativity and flexibility. It can feel a little intimidating at first for some people, but I am committed to working at your comfort level and clients often comment afterward on how it helped them to see something in a whole new way.
For those who prefer to spend their sessions talking, I have extensive experience with more traditional talk therapy as well and I am able to offer support, guidance, tools, and a listening ear.
For more information, read my blog post: Five Reasons to do Drama Therapy!
Sarah Harkness, MA, RDT, LMFT is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist #88566 and Registered Drama Therapist #631 with a private practice in San Mateo and San Francisco. She has worked with people from all walks of life regarding relationship concerns, anxiety, depression, substance abuse, religious trauma, taming the inner critic, and life transitions. She is an associate with the Living Arts Counseling Center.