Experiential therapies often offer clients the ability to express feelings, access emotions and work through mental health challenges by engaging their creative and harnessing the power of perspective. Psychodrama is a therapeutic modality practiced in a group format that relies on engaging and interactive role playing and acting to explore pertinent mental health and interpersonal issues. In creating a safe and supportive environment, a clinician may utilize psychodrama to help a client understand and develop skills to overcome relationship conflicts, gain insights into emotional wellness and harness social interactions to learn from one another.
Psychodrama typically works under the close guidance of a well-trained clinician and incorporates scenes, clients’ past experiences and, even, dreams for dramatic materials that are typically curated and chosen based on the clinical populations’ mental health needs. Perhaps more than other therapies, the participation of a group of individuals, each with his or her own unique challenges, adds a layer of perspective, mutual trust and support to process emotional challenges. In Psychodrama clients are expected to cultivate added self-awareness and perspective by seeing one’s experiences acted out by other group members.
Generally, a typical session of psychodrama will proceed in 3 distinct stages: warm-up, action and sharing. In the warm up phase, clinicians guide group members to trust one another and spend several minutes introducing themselves and their challenges to their peers. At this moment, clients can gain insights into the lives of their counterparts and better understand their roles in the scene to come. In the action phase, a client will assume control over a scene with the support of his or her peers. The acting will include therapeutic techniques such as mirroring, role reversals and soliloquy.
Research suggests that psychodrama has been most effective in supporting clients work through adopting and attachment issues, mood disorders, trauma (PTSD), secondary eating disorders and dual diagnosis addiction-related issues. Clients practicing psychodrama can expect to work towards results that may support with the following challenges:
-Self-expression and communicating emotions
-Obstacles in relationships and interpersonal effectiveness
-Enhanced social and emotional abilities
-Improved self-esteem and sense of identity
At its core, psychodrama is a modality that stresses the importance of healthy relationships, social engagement and the power of perspective to recognize unproductive patterns of behaviors and thoughts. Resilience Treatment Center offers psychodrama alongside other individual and group modalities in an effort to address clients’ underlying emotional and mental health needs. In any of Resilience’s programs– Residential, PHP and IOP– clients can expect to work with their primary therapist to build a tailored treatment plan that seeks to address their emotional, relational and functional mental health needs while instilling a sense of empowerment and resiliency.