Edited by HENRY REED, Ph.D.
December 05,   2017
 Play & Creativity in Psychothera

Play & Creativity in Psychotherapy


Terry Marks-Tarlow, Marion Solomon, and Daniel J. Siegel

Reviewed by Henry Reed

To some of us, the ability to play is the number one symptom of being healthy and alive. Impediments to being able to play are psychological indicators of stress, inhibition, and less than ideal functioning. It's hard to believe. We are such an achievement oriented society. Play seems irresponsible. That's ignorance and prejudice speaking. That a professional book needs to come out and state to psychotherapists that play is healthy is a sure symptom of distress in the psychotherapy industry. Ever since health insurance has taken over psychotherapy, the need to document treatments, hour by hour, against progress made in being productive, has shrunk the shrink industry's sense of its own intuitive guidance. Instead, they orient to the paperwork--how shall I document today's treatment?

This book is full of professional, scientific, practical information regarding the crucial importance of play in being well and healthy, resilient to challenges. It stands in objective contrast to the opinion that playing is a waste of time. I encourage readers to check out the table of contents to discover the various specific ways in which play therapy can make a big difference.

We claim that the doctors don't do the healing, nature does. What the doctor does is to prepare the patient for nature's operation. Play can be very ambiguous, hard to pin down into elements of labor producing elements of progress or production. We look to outcomes, and ignore the process. For some adults, discovering that they can indeed play comes as a healing shock. Freedom from the jail of shoulds and expectations. If nature is to do the healing, then the patient must play, for nature plays.

When therapists philosophize, and speculate about the eternals of human existence, rather than the practicalities of today's challenges to behaviors and habits, the eternal verities return to the discussion. True, we need to eat in order to live, but we don't live in order to eat--we live to play! Everyone is born ready and feeling entitled to explore what life brings out in them as they play along. Unfortunately, the grown ups have been spoiled and begin to spoil the kids. That will provide future income for psychotherapists. Health insurance going out the window, we'll need a new basis for supporting psychotherapists who wish to save us through play!

Seriously, though, no playing around, these folks are making important suggestions regarding the importance of play. Buy a copy and send it to your insurance company! Therapists would love to play with you; they just have to document it and rationalize it in order to get paid. This book will help a lot!

To explore Play and Creativity in Psychotherapy at Amazon.com, click here!

From the Publisher (Norton):

The contents

    1. Deer, Chicken, Hunting Dogs, and the Future of Humankind by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

    2. A Closer Look at Play by Stuart Brown and Madelyn Eberle

    3. Play and the Default Mode Network: Interpersonal Neurobiology, Self, and Creativity by Aldrich Chan and Daniel J. Siegel

    4. How Love Opens Creativity, Play, and the Arts through Early Right-Brain Development by Allan Schore and Terry Marks-Tarlow

    5. Play, Creativity, and Movement Vocabulary by Pat Ogden

    6. A Cross-Cultural and Cross-Disciplinary Perspective of Play by Theresa Kestly

    7. Creativity in the Training of Psychotherapists by Louis Cozolino

    8. Awakening Clinical Intuition, Creativity and Play by Terry Marks-Tarlow

    9. Trauma, Attachment, and Creativity by Paula Thomson

    10. Resonance, Synchrony, and Empathic Attunement: Musical Dimensions of Psychotherapy by Victoria Stevens

    11. Playing with Someone Who Loves You: Creating Safety and Joyful Parent-Child Connection with Theraplay by Phyllis B. Booth, Dafna Lender, and Sandra Lindaman

    12. PLAY and the Construction of Creativity, Cleverness, and Reversal of ADHD in our Social Brains by Jaak Panksepp

    13. Nesting Dolls: A Playful Way to Illustrate a Valuable Intervention in Couples Therapy by Marion F. Solomon

    14. Rage, Comedy, and Creativity in Theater by Jonathan Lynn

    15. Rage Underlying Humor in Psychotherapy by Rita Lynn

    16. Developing Resilience with the Improviser's Mindset: Getting People Out of Their Stuck Places by Zoe Galvez and Betsy Crouch

    17. Cultivating Curiosity, Creativity, Confidence, and Self-Awareness Through Mindful Group-Therapy for Children and Adolescents by Bonnie Goldstein

    18. The Power of Optimism by Steve Gross

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