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Ingredient Overview

Imagery, symbolism and metaphor are key processes extensively used in arts psychotherapies that can facilitate processing of difficult issues. By staying within a metaphor either offered by the therapist or the client, it becomes possible to explore imaginary situations where finding alternative solutions is possible. Clients may be able to communicate to themselves and others using symbolic material, sounds, gestures and postures. Facilitators create situational conditions for engaging with imagination, allowing time to enable participants to stay with a deeply felt experience including working alone, with others, and with the group as a whole. The presence of other/s may allow for the processing to be witnessed, which can also be helpful. References may be made to exploring what it was like to stay with the process that could enable a meta view of the issue. Clients may continue working with a prominent symbol/metaphor over several sessions in an evolving process, amplifying or contrasting the same symbol/metaphor using different mediums.

Examples – Using imagery, symbolism and metaphor: exploring personal material through alternative creative perspectives or mediums.

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