Our 2017 Annual Conference, Creative Arts Therapies: Innovation and Integration, is approaching on September 8, 2017, and we are using the summer to introduce our panelists. We will feature one guest speaker a week. Last week Karen Gibbons wrote about her use of yoga and art therapy. This week, Jennifer Tantia discusses her work in dance/movement therapy and how she finds adaptability in the creative arts therapies to be innovative:
As Creative Arts Therapists, innovation in our work lies in the ability to adapt with the changing times. Technology, politics, and the many ways in which we can now work world-wide gives us new challenges and opportunities to grow the ways in which our work can meet new needs as they arise. Our sensitivity to specific cultural needs during natural disasters; ability to adapt to the new “diagnoses” emerging from technological overload and the ability to remain open to new suffering that may arise as a result of the unpredictable, tumultuous and chaotic current political climate in which we live, gives us the opportunity to grow as mental health practitioners as well as continue to allow our work to grow with these changes.
For instance, more adult professionals (like you and me!) are seeking out creative arts therapy as a way to understand themselves and live in their relationships more deeply. Due to the vast information on the internet and in the zeitgeist of body/mind integrative awareness, they are seeking “more” than talk therapy to work through anxiety, depression and other suffering. However, most masters’ programs in the US are designed to teach students to work with more severely mentally ill patients. It is up to those of us who work with adults outside of the psychiatric unit to integrate what we already know to evolve our interventions to meet the needs of emerging populations.
Jennifer Frank Tantia, PhD, MS, BC-DMT, LCAT is a somatic psychologist and dance/movement therapist in private practice in Manhattan, specializing in anxiety disorders and medically unexplained symptoms. She is part of the research faculty at Lesley University and specializes in embodied research. Dr. Tantia currently serves on the board of the American Dance Therapy Association as chair of Research and Practice, and is an associate editor of the journal, Body, Movement and Dance in Psychotherapy. Dr. Tantia teaches internationally and has authored several publications in both dance/movement therapy and somatic psychology. Her forthcoming edited book, Embodied Perspectives in Psychotherapy, focuses on the many ways in which embodiment is addressed and integrated into the psychotherapeutic process. www.soma-psyche.com
Stay tuned for more information about our guest speakers!