A troubled mind is something that human beings have known since the beginning of history. Whether sublimating our inner turmoil into poetry and art or seeking refuge in community and religion, we have always come up with ways to deal with the troubled mind. But the discovery of the science behind it, psychology, came about much later and the study of modern psychology is commonly associated with Sigmund Freud.
Freud was the founder of psychoanalysis – a sort of therapy in which the patient and the therapist work closely to transcend the troubles of the mind. He believed that all problematic behaviours arose from repressed thoughts and desires. And his therapy sought to bring these repressed currents to the surface of consciousness and thereby attempted to resolve them.
We have come a long way in therapy since the days of Freud. Today, treatment is no longer limited to the standard talk therapy where you lie on a couch and talk about how you feel but has diversified into many creative methods of understanding the mind. Let’s explore the methods practitioners commonly employ:
Hypnosis or Hypnotherapy:
Hypnosis or hypnotherapy is an alternative medicine in which the client is transported to a state of trance or an altered state of awareness. Their underlying issues are then untangled with positive suggestions and guided imagery. It had been considered a magic trick in the past until a German physician named Franz Mesmer used it as a scientific tool. The word ‘mesmerising’ has its origin in his name.
As you might imagine, this mode of therapy is still surrounded by many myths and it can only be performed with explicit permission from the client.
Creative Arts Therapy:
The creative arts open a door of possibilities to treat mental disturbances. In this method, the therapist plays a moderator’s role, but it is the art itself that heals the disturbed with colors, textures, expressions, and all its visual power. There is a common belief that we might need a creative background to explore this kind of therapy, although that has mostly proved to be untrue.
Creative art therapy allows us to be free and move with the flow without any prejudices or judgements.
There is often an overlap between play and creative arts therapy. But in essence, play therapy uses play to resolve children’s problems and, in some cases, even adults. It uses a variety of playful props like sand, clay, or lego blocks. Through play, the therapist tries to understand the child’s problems, helps them deal with unresolved trauma, and cope with them. The benefits of play therapy include improving fine and gross motor skills like sitting, crawling, walking, or running. It can also help develop empathy, self-respect, and self-expression through verbal and non-verbal communication and overcome anxiety.
This is a much-preferred mode of therapy that employs music to heal the disturbed. In this method, the vibration of instruments reverberates with the cells in our body and brings succour. It is well known that music possesses a tremendous power to touch the finer chords of our emotions, thereby enriching and elevating our humaneness. The patient is taken through a series of activities such as listening to melodies, writing songs, playing an instrument, and guided imagery, and it can be used across age groups.
Dance / Movement Therapy:
It is only apt that we dance to express joy during celebrations. Dance or movement therapy is an effort to use our body movements to understand our emotions, as our body keeps score of all our experiences and feelings. The body possesses its own set of memories, and dancing is a powerful tool to unravel its secrets. A movement therapist aims to bring us in contact with our unaware self and uses both guided and free movements to help us understand ourselves better.
As we grow up, many of us lose touch with this unique language. The therapist helps one rediscover this vital sense of direction and movements by expressing themselves. For this kind of therapy, one need not have any prior training in dance, and only licensed therapists can administer it.
To Sum it Up:
Ways of soothing the troubled mind are many – they can be fun and help us develop positive habits for a lifetime. More than just treatment, therapy is a vital tool to discover ourselves and find our true passions. Get in touch with one of our experts and explore what might work for you!