Definition of Art Therapy

Definition of Art Therapy

In the world of Mental Health the words of Psychotherapy, Therapy and Counseling sometimes are used interchangeably. This can cause confusion. Therapy is a very generic term and sometimes Counseling can be understood as advice or even coaching.

Psychotherapy is a deep process of self reflection and exploration of thoughts and feelings that leads to conflict resolution and attainment of goals that lead to life satisfaction and happiness.

Art Psychotherapy is a discipline within the field of mental health that provides the same therapeutic process as “talk therapy”, but adds a dimension to the work that is unlike anything else.

Art Psychotherapy is a licensed, mental health specialty that focuses on the process of talking about your issues, feelings and thoughts with the ability to access and integrate creativity through mentalizing and / or creating images. Recapturing a dream, finding a picture in a magazine, or simply creating a “doodle” that comes to the mind effortlessly and spontaneously are some examples of how everyone has images they can relate to. Sometimes the imagery rises to the level of Art, a more “completed” picture…but it doesn’t have to…and it has nothing to do with talent. All that is required is a willingness to express yourself through visualization and using the tools of the artist as you talk with your therapist to gain the level of understanding and awareness you need to effectively manage your intellect, emotions and spirit.

“The secret to life is in Art” Oscar Wilde
From www.GoodTherapy.org:

“Individual therapy—also known as psychotherapy, talk therapy, or counseling—is a collaborative process between therapist and client that aims to facilitate change and improve quality of life.”

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