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Sandplay & Symbol Work: Emotional Healing & Personal Development With Children, Adolescents (PDF) PDF

150 Pages·2001·2.88 MB·English
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Cover FINAL 29/6/04 12:31 PM Page 1 A NDPLAY S & SYMBOL w o r k Emotional Healing & Personal Development andplay and symbol work are therapeutic tools for self-discovery and with Children, Adolescents and Adults emotional healing. By arranging small objects in a sandtray, children, SSadolescents and adults can unlock the subconscious and reveal unspoken dilemmas. For many people, it is a powerful form of self-expression and an important step towards personal healing. Sandplay & Symbol Work guides therapists, counsellors and psychologists in this breakthrough technique. Therapists Mark Pearson and Helen Wilson present step-by- step exercises for practitioners to assist clients’ symbol work. Also presented are: • the history of sandplay and symbol work techniques, and their links to Jungian psychology; • methods to adapt the techniques to clients of all age groups and different settings; • case histories from the authors’ own field work, including full-colour photos of sandplay sessions; and • research literature on a variety of sandplay applications. Sandplay & Symbol Work is an invaluable guide for counsellors wishing to explore this innovative technique and support others effectively in exploring their inner world. About the Authors: Mark Pearson and Helen Wilson have a combined experience of training counsellors, psychologists and psychotherapists in the use of sandplay therapy and symbol work of over 25 years. Mark is the author of Emotional Release for Children (ACER Press, 1995), Emotional Healing & Self-esteem (ACER Press, 1998) and several books outlining emotional release counselling with adults. M a r k P e a r s o n • H e l e n W i l s o n SANDPLAY & SYMBOL WORK M a r k P e a r s o n • H e l e n W i l s o n SP&SW - Inside FINAL 29/6/04 12:13 PM Page i A NDPLAY S & SYMBOL w o r k Emotional Healing & Personal Development with Children, Adolescents and Adults M a r k P e a r s o n • H e l e n W i l s o n SP&SW - Inside FINAL 29/6/04 12:13 PM Page ii SP&SW - Inside FINAL 29/6/04 12:13 PM Page iii A NDPLAY S & SYMBOL w o r k Emotional Healing Personal Development & with Children, Adolescents and Adults M a r k P e a r s o n • H e l e n W i l s o n SP&SW - Inside FINAL 29/6/04 12:13 PM Page iv First published 2001 by Australian Council for Educational Research Ltd 19 Prospect Hill Road, Camberwell, Melbourne, Victoria, 3124 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 Copyright © 2001 Mark Pearson and Helen Wilson All rights reserved. Except under the conditions described in the Copyright Act 1968 of Australia and subsequent amendments, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or otherwise, without the written permission of the publishers. The material in the photocopy masters may be reproduced by individuals in quantities sufficient for non-commercial application. Edited by Jane Angus, Writers Reign Cover and text design by Polar Design Cover photography by Lindsay Edwards Sandplay photographs by Helen Wilson and Tess Pearson Printed in Australia by Shannon Books National Library of Australia Cataloguing-in-Publication data: Pearson, Mark. Sandplay & symbol work: emotional healing & personal development with children, adolescents and adults. Bibliography. Includes index. ISBN 0 86431 340 3. 1. Sandplay – Therapeutic use. 2. Play therapy. 3. Psychotherapy. I. Wilson, Helen. II. Title. 616.89165 Visit our website: www.acerpress.com.au S P & S W - I n s i d e F I N A L 2 9 / 6 / 0 4 1 2 : 1 3 P M P a g e v C o n t e n t s I n t r o d u c t i o n The language of symbols 1 C h a p t e r 1 The development of sandplay 4 How does sandplay work? 4 Differences between sandplay and symbol work 6 The evolution of sandplay as used in ERC 8 Sandplay and symbol work in ERC 10 Basic principles underlying ERC and sandplay practice 11 What supports emotional healing? 12 Sandplay literature and research 15 Sandplay as an aid to counselling in schools 15 Sandplay and multiple intelligences 18 Sandplay and academic improvement 20 Sandplay with abused children 21 Sandplay and grieving 23 Sandplay, symbol work and ERC in Australian group programs 23 C h a p t e r 2 A gathering of wisdom – the Jungian heritage and contemporary sandplay 24 Some aims of sandplay 24 Emotional and psychological safety 26 How can sandplay help clients? 29 The value of play 31 Dealing with aggression 32 The role of the therapist 33 Stages in the sandplay process 34 After the sandplay 36 The contribution of play therapy 37 Sandplay and transpersonal psychology 38 C h a p t e r 3 Sandplay and symbol work methods 41 Elements of the process 41 Some uses of sandplay 44 Trusting the inner healer 45 The free sandplay method 46 Overview of the process 46 Some ways of beginning 48 Gestalt role-play with sandplay figures 50 The focused method 50 Directed methods 50 Stages in sandplay sessions 51 Sandplay for families and groups 51 Sandplay with couples 53 v S P & S W - I n s i d e F I N A L 2 9 / 6 / 0 4 1 2 : 1 3 P M P a g e v i C h a p t e r 4 Symbol work exercises 54 The basic steps of a counselling session 55 Relationships 60 Families and school 61 Emotional and physical release 63 Self-esteem 67 Spiritual direction and personal review 69 C h a p t e r 5 Expressive support processes 72 Bioenergetics 72 Music to support bioenergetic exercises and movement work 74 Energy release games 75 Drawing after sandplay and symbol work 77 Other media 78 C h a p t e r 6 Professional orientation 80 Basic rules and advice for facilitators 82 Guidelines for facilitators 83 Learning to observe 84 Preparing the counselling room 85 Integration 86 Evaluation, review and recording 88 Equipment 88 Sandplay with different age groups 91 Contraindications 92 Sandplay and nature 93 Using symbols in professional supervision 94 Getting started with sandplay – a six-point plan 95 Advice for parents of child clients 96 Training 99 C o n c l u s i o n 101 S a n d p l a y s t o r i e s 103 A p p e n d i x I : Self-discovery worksheet: The different parts of me 115 A p p e n d i x I I : Gestalt role-play exercise 116 A p p e n d i x I I I : Record form for sandplay sessions 117 R e f e r e n c e s 119 G l o s s a r y 125 I n d e x o f e x e r c i s e s 129 G e n e r a l i n d e x 130 v i SP&SW - Inside FINAL 29/6/04 12:13 PM Page vii T h e a u t h o r s Mark Pearson Mark has been conducting Certificate Courses in Emotional Release Counselling (ERC) and sandplay around Australia since 1989. He was a primary school teacher, then founded a remedial reading clinic. He has worked briefly with handicapped children and conducted individual and group programs for emotionally disturbed children and adolescents. For five years Mark held a senior staff position at the Living Water Centre, Blue Mountains, NSW, as lecturer in Emotional Release Counselling for Children, Breathwork Therapy, Dreamwork and Sandplay, then directed courses at The Portiuncula Centre in Toowoomba for eight years. He has completed further studies in Transpersonal Psychology with Dr Stanislav Grof, and is completing M.Ed. studies, majoring in Behaviour Management. He now works as a psychotherapy and counselling trainer in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney through Turnaround, and for the Australian Council for Educational Research in Melbourne. He regularly runs programs for various welfare agencies and education departments around Australia. He is the co-author (with Patricia Nolan) of Emotional First-aid for Children (1991) and Emotional Release for Children (1995). He is also the author of Emotional Healing and Self-esteem – Inner-life Skills of Relaxation, Visualisation and Meditation for Children and Adolescents (1998) and for adults: From Healing to Awakening (1991) and The Healing Journey (1997). Helen Wilson Helen is an emotional release counsellor in private practice in Brisbane. Together with Mark, she also conducts training in ERC, sandplay and transpersonal therapies in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. Helen has completed all three levels of train- ing in Emotional Release Counselling and Transpersonal Studies and holds the Post- Graduate Diploma. She has a Certificate in ERC with Children, a Certificate in Sandplay Therapy, and a degree in Human Resource Management. She was, for several years, on the staff at The Portiuncula Centre, Toowoomba. She is the founder of Turnaround through which she and Mark offer personal and pro- fessional development programs. Helen completed training in transpersonal psychology and holotropic breath- work with Dr Stanislav Grof in 1998. She has used sandplay and symbol work in a wide range of applications with individuals, couples, families and groups. Helen and Mark are both recognised as Senior Trainers by their professional body and are foundation members of the Queensland Transpersonal and Emotional Release Counsellors Association Inc. and members of the Queensland Association for Family Therapy. v i i S P & S W - I n s i d e F I N A L 2 9 / 6 / 0 4 1 2 : 1 3 P M P a g e v i i i Acknowledgements We are grateful to the many clients over the years who have entered will- ingly – in great trust and faith – into the realm of the symbolic and given us the privilege of witnessing their journey of transformation as well as giving us valuable learning experiences about sand and symbols. We would like to thank our clients who have kindly given permission for photographs and stories of their exploration to be used. Many thanks are also due to our trainees, whose inner journeys, probing questions and generous sharings have enriched our experience of sandplay. Special thanks go to Pru Beatty and Alana Vaney for contributing stories of their use of symbols, and to Kathy Halvorson for the exercise on page 62. We would like to acknowledge the initial training from Patrick Jansen, a student of Dora Kalff, and all the writers on sandplay who have supported and enlarged our understanding. v i i i SP&SW - Inside FINAL 29/6/04 12:13 PM Page 1 I n t r o d u c t i o n The language of symbols round the walls of the sandplay room are shelves filled with small figurines: little people, animals, fish, birds, trees, buildings, military equip- Ament, miniature household items, model cars, trucks, buses, flowers, jewels, skeletons, funny things, frightening things, endearing things, reli- gious things, primitive dolls and much, much more. In the middle of this treasure trove of figurines – silently waiting to become symbols for our inner world – is a sandtray, similar to the ones we may have used in kindergarten. The sand calls out to be touched, moved, shaped. We may begin our session by arranging the sand – heaping it into hills and valleys, rivers or coastlines. We play and add figurines, gradually seeing them as representing our feelings, thoughts, attitudes, longings and unconscious drives. We may begin to under- stand ourselves more clearly, or we may simply begin to feel better. We share what we wish with the sandplay facilitator, and grow within the warmth of their acceptance. The figurines on the shelves can represent parts of ourselves; they become significant symbols for us as our inner meanings are projected onto them. As we look at the shelves we may feel that some of the symbols reach out. We might feel greatly repulsed or attracted – that’s usually a clue that a symbol is important. The repulsion or attraction can be an expression of the uncon- scious. Sometimes we will choose symbols to represent themes about which we are already conscious. At other times we simply allow the symbol to call us. We take the figurines that we like, and start to arrange them in the sand. We probably do not realise it at first, but the symbols stand out for us because something inside us resonates, recognises itself in them. When the sandplay figurines become symbols they begin to express the language of our unconscious. Connection to what is unconscious in us sup- ports emotional healing and personal development. Sandplay is a hands-on, expressive counselling and psychotherapy modality that has been in use for well over fifty years. It has been used with children, adolescents and adults in schools, hospitals, welfare agencies and private counselling practices. It forms a bridge between verbal therapy and 1

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