About some of the processes
About Sandplay Therapy
Sandplay is a holistic approach to counselling. By choosing miniature objects as they are called to you and placing them in the tray of sand, you will clearly display your inner world. This is to help you understand what is beneath the current situation or fear that you are facing at the time. Each session is different. Your sub-conscious or inner wisdom reveals unspoken issues and helps bring solutions. Sandplay Therapy is for all ages.
With children or adults who have suffered trauma, Sandplay helps to initially communicate without words in a safe environment and they often play out what is worrying them by creating their inner world in the tray, thereby unconsciously releasing stress and helping them to resolve issues or concerns. Sandplay is very good for children who have suffered great change and trauma. Many times children will spontaneously start talking about what is worrying them as they draw their picture in the sand, or immediately afterwards.
Another benefit is that for a teen or adult who seeks guidance on going in a particular direction or making a decision, Sandplay helps you reveal the answer to yourself. It is not magical, but it can feel magical.
In the studio are rows of miniature objects and a tray on wheels, filled with beautiful sand. The sand helps us connect to our heart and subconscious whilst a beautiful piece of music is played. At the same time, whatever objects are calling to you are placed in the tray, one at a time. As you are working subconsciously, the objects choose you rather than you choosing the objects. The subconscious thus has permission to express exactly what it wants you to look at that session. I then guide you to look deeply within to find out what the real issues of the day are, and how to allow inner changes to happen. It is transpersonal because it involves the body, emotions, the soul and the vibrational formations that make us who we are. This explores our inner knowing and from this inner territory, healing happens.
Sandplay is the most effective tool for self discovery and is really helpful also to professionals who come to me so that they can let go of their load and reduce the prospect of burnout.
Origins of Sandplay
Sandplay was developed and introduced to the world in 1928 by Margaret Lowenfeld, a paediatrician, with an interest in how children think and feel.
One of Margaret Lowenfeld's discoveries was that of “pre-verbal language” in children. She called the sandtray a “living language” of non-verbal words, which uses symbols and miniatures to speak.
Dora Kalff was a Jungian Analyst. She had completed training as a Jungian analyst, but because she did not have a traditional college degree she was not permitted to practice. Carl Jung encouraged her to work with a child therapist in London, named Margaret Lowenfeld. This is where Dora first worked with children and sand. When Dora returned to Switzerland, Margaret agreed she could develop her own method of sandtray therapy and Dora began Sandplay in Zurich, Switzerland in the 1950s where it has continued to develop into such an effective therapy for all ages including adults.
ART IN THERAPY versus Art AS Therapy
You may know, or have heard of, Art Therapy as being related to painting, colouring in etc - and indeed, it can be a personal therapy for you. Art as Therapy can be a very satisfying and creative form of free self-expression. In this way it is therapeutic.
However, Art in Therapy is a diagnostic psychotherapy tool like Sandplay Therapy, that is very good for individuals who need time to go more slowly. The images then evolve on the page and the inner world is reflected in the drawing as the client taps into their inner wisdom. We often use music or visualisation meditation to quiet the mind and body. However, a longer time appointment is required for this.
Karen uses both Sandplay Therapy and Art in Therapy as transpersonal processes, combined with music, visualisation journeying, writing and more.
Each person is an individual and each session is catered for that individual, no matter what age they are.