The Big Moment: Inspiration Vs. Perspiration in the Therapy Room
By David Waters
The Art of the Therapeutic Conversation
By Jay Efran and Mitchell Greene
The Poetics of Progress Notes: Using Your Imagination with Tough Cases
By Brad Sachs
Rediscovering the Mystery: For John O’Donohue, Therapy Is a Journey into the Unknown Self
By Mary Sykes Wylie
The Practices of Transformation: With Ben and Roz Zander, Breakthroughs Are the Norm
By Richard Simon
Beauty Resurrected: Awakening Wonder in the Consulting Room
By Michael Ventura
Content Search Overview: Therapists, social workers, counselors and others found these articles helpful in using creativity in therapy practices. People searching for information on the following terms and concepts found these articles helpful:
Use of Self
Sample from: The Poetics of Progress Notes, by Brad Sachs
Reading the poem inspired by my session with Wendy crystallized for me how dutiful she was. She was essentially raising her two children as a single mother while tending to her adolescent-acting husband. She volunteered at the children's school and was team manager for her girls' lacrosse teams. She also regularly fielded her mother's calls for medical advice and made herself available to drive her to appointments, even though they lived almost an hour apart.
Perhaps, it occurred to me, her responsibilities were so oppressive that they were oppressing me, prompting me to avoid attending to her by allowing my own attention to roam. My reverie may have been serving the same purpose for me that her drinking did for her--allowing for a momentary break from a suffocating reality. After this insight, I was able to rouse myself from my previous torpor and focus on our sessions with more clarity. I helped Wendy begin to examine her ambivalence about setting limits with her children, her husband, and her mother. I encouraged her to start looking for ways to nourish and gratify herself that didn't rely entirely on meeting others' needs.
Thinking more about her own needs, she joined a senior swim team, and insisted that her husband be home the two evenings a week she practiced to supervise the girls' homework and nighttime routine, which, to her surprise, he agreed to do. She made some calls to a senior-support services center in her mom's neighborhood, and found that they offered free transportation for local seniors' medical appointments, which unburdened her as well. She also began attending Al-Anon meetings.
From Psychotherapy Networker, November/December 2005
Sample from: Beauty Resurrected, by Michael Ventura
The illness had stripped me down to the core of my being, which, like the core of anyone's being, feels itself most intensely when at the meeting-point of life and death.
And the window--the window!--had poured beauty into me at just that terribly vulnerable moment. And everything changed; or, to put it more accurately and less dramatically, many disparate and not-yet-coherent elements in me coalesced and found their focus.
Many walk into the therapist's consulting room exactly at the moment, and because of the moment, that they have been stripped to the core of their being. While not at the physical meeting-point of life and death, they are often at its emotional and spiritual equivalent. One element they seek and are desperate for, one element they usually feel they've lost, is beauty; they present a situation that's cut them off from experiencing beauty. They may not articulate it that way, but that's what's going on. Yet, beauty has not still been sufficiently recognized as both a healing balm and a necessity--something without which we may die, and through which we may live.
From Psychotherapy Networker, January/February 2001