By far the most useful therapy technique I have come across is the Two-Selves (also called the two-chair) technique.
Time and again in therapy I have observed how a person intends to change a behaviour that no longer serves them, only to find that another part of themselves has a totally different idea and refuses to go along with the changes – it refuses to be controlled, disciplined, or to cooperate with what the person believes they want.
Last week, as part of the East Vancouver Culture Crawl, I was invited to give a talk about Outsider Art.
The place that invited me to do this talk is The Kettle Society, an organization that has the mandate to serve people with a mental health diagnosis. When I was an Expressive Arts therapy student, did one of my practicums at The Kettle, and I loved it.
I have read many interesting books by the author and psychotherapist Irvin Yalom, and one of my favorites is a book I got as a graduation present from a friend who is also an art therapist: “The Gift of Therapy, an open letter to a new generation of therapists and their patients”.
In Expressive Arts therapy, it’s a common practice to talk to the images we create and it’s also a practice to listen to the images talk through us. The images, having been created in the intuitive right-brain, seem to express a point of view that often surprises the intellectual left brain.
My family has very strong women. My mother never laughed at my dream of Africa, even though everyone else did because we didn’t have any money, because Africa was the ‘dark continent’, and because I was a girl.
My family has very strong women too. I’ve talked in a previous post about my mother being a feminist; being unstoppable. Growing up I witnessed her doing everything and anything she was capable of, including plumbing, electrical wiring for the house, changing a car tire, fixing the washing machine, building a closet and fixing the car’s engine whilst on the road. My father wasn’t much of a handy-man, so my mom was the default fixer upper.