Psychodrama Therapy

Psychodrama an experiential group process that allows clients to further explore personal issues through dramatic role-playing.

Through this action method, clients learn a new perspective and insight on emotional challenges and life’s difficulties in a safe, group setting.

This therapy is often conducted on a designated stage and under the direction of a licensed therapist. It is intended to encourage creative problem solving.

Focus of Psychodrama

In psychodrama, clients reenact real-life situations with their peers to work through relationship conflicts, unresolved grief, and internal issues with self.

The process of psychodrama allows clients to work through issues that they struggle with, therefore reducing the risk for relapse.

In each role-play, a single client in a group is designated as the protagonist, and the action focuses on one of their personal situations.

This may include – but is not limited to – past happenings, inner drama, dreams, or future preparations.

Psychodrama Therapy

The Therapist’s Role in Psychodrama

The therapist’s primary role in this unique form of therapy is to be the director. Before each role-play, the therapist begins with a warm-up period to create trust and a sense of safety among the participants.

Following warm-up is the action phase in which the therapist helps the protagonist set the scene revolving around the personal situation they have chosen to act out. Some group members will participate in the role play and others will act as the audience.

During the scene, it is the therapist’s role to not only direct, but also encourage responses from the audience, provide emotional support, and draw out new insights from the experience.

Directly following the role-play, the group is guided in a discussion about their reactions. The therapist concludes the therapy by offering support and insight on how to respond to the difficulties presented within the scene.

Related: The five types of friends you should surround yourself with during recovery

Methods of Psychodrama

The process of acting out the protagonist’s personal situation may take on a variety of acting methods.

The four most commonly utilized techniques in the action phase of psychodrama include:

1. Mirroring

The Mirroring Method is often utilized when a client is feeling detached or emotionally distant from the situation chosen for the scene. In mirroring, other group members act out the scene while the client observes.

2. Role Reversal

In the Role Reversal Method, the client portrays a role other than themself in the scene. Another group member plays the role of the protagonist. This gives the client the opportunity to see things from another perspective, while viewing the other actors’ portrayal of themselves.

3. Doubling

The Doubling Method brings the unsaid emotions of the scene to light. While the protagonist is acting the scene, another group member speaks aloud what they believe to be the protagonist’s true thoughts or feelings. The protagonist is always able to correct the “doubler,” thus keeping the scene accurate.

4. Soliloquy

In the Soliloquy Method, the protagonist speaks to the audience and shares their inner thoughts and feelings.

Related: The importance of having a creative outlet during recovery

Why is Psychodrama Beneficial?

Psychodrama is a successful method for problem resolution through the establishment of new life skills and behavioral responses. Because psychodrama is an engaging therapy that happens spontaneously, it is a powerful and inspiring alternative to traditional talk therapy.

Through the practice of psychodrama, clients find new tools to overcome grief and loss while enhancing learning, interpersonal connection, and communication skills.

By giving clients the opportunity to express their feelings in a safe, supportive environment, therapists are able to help restore confidence and create space for new ways of thinking and behaving.

Psychodrama is one of many treatment therapies we use at Alo House.

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We believe trust, meaningful connections, and kindness are the essentials to beginning a journey in recovery. We are dedicated to providing an honest, authentic, and genuine treatment environment that gives our clients a unique opportunity for healing.

Alo House is LegitScript Certified and a Joint Commission Accredited Addiction Treatment Center.