So many play therapy techniques, so little time and money, am I right?
If you are anything like me, you will often lust after the newest therapy game, puppet, toy, or whatever else you think will make your life easier when working with that tough, nonverbal kid who just doesn’t want to be there.
You end up spending lots of money on a book or game that maybe (if you are lucky) gets used once every couple of months.
So - what to do? You are still needing a good way of working with all the kids and families across diagnoses and populations.
I’ll let you in on my MOST effective weapon to kill those “I don’t know what to do” feelings. It’s something I use with ALL of my clients: Sandtray Therapy.
The beauty of sandtray therapy is that YOU don’t have to do the work. You don’t have to know the answer or even the problem.
I mean, how many times do you get a kid in therapy where the parent says “This just isn’t my kid, help me.” When this happens, you can either fall into misery and doubt why you even became a therapist or you can do a sandtray.
With sandtray therapy, the clients works it out themselves. You are there to be a container for the healing. You are there to hold the space and trust the process.
As long as you are trained in knowing how to trust the process (because it IS a powerful process), your client will heal, no matter how scary the issue may seem.
I won’t lie - I have a pretty well-stocked play room in my private practice and my puppets, art materials, and doll house all get a lot of use. BUT, I’ve often thought, “If I could only keep one type of play therapy method, what would I choose?”
For me, the answer is easy: Sandtray Therapy.
Why? Three main reasons:
- It’s versatile. It can be used across ages, populations, and diagnoses.
- It doesn’t rely on me knowing everything. I am always leery of anything that relies on my knowledge to be effective, because let’s face it, I’m not all that. I mean I try, but there are days when I wonder.
- It’s just plain fun. For my clients and me. I love to watch my client’s world come alive in the tray. It’s a privilege to witness their healing and growth.
Scan this infographic. Print it out and stick it on your desk somewhere for those days when you don’t know what to do or how to help. Remember, when you don’t know, do a sandtray.
Amy blogs and speaks regularly about sandtray therapy and is the founder and director of a specialized training program, the Southern Sandtray Institute where she works with those wishing to earn the credentials of a Registered Integrative Sandtray Therapist (RIST).
For play therapy week, you can download her 1 hour CE course “Sandtray Therapy: An Introduction to its Transformative Power” for only $7. Get it here.