Experiential therapy includes various therapeutic techniques rather than a type of psychotherapy. Clients take part in activities, and as they immerse themselves in action, they gain skills to help them solve problems and learn new behaviors. Experiential therapy is typically part of a comprehensive therapeutic approach that includes talk therapy, mindfulness therapy, and others.
Experiential therapy can be very beneficial for clients who have a difficult time with talk therapy. Some people have trouble verbalizing problematic issues because they’re so traumatized by them. Others become so agitated or angry when thinking about the problem that sessions can’t continue. It’s vital that these clients have appropriate ways to express their feelings when talking is too overwhelming.
How It Helps and Activities
How It Helps
It’s not uncommon for people with eating disorders to have unresolved pain from their past, often buried on some subconscious level. Due to the negative events in their past, they find it hard to express their feelings or have healthy relationships. They often lack a sense of self-awareness and don’t feel validated enough to express their real emotions or desires.
When clients engage in experiential therapy activities, our therapists observe them. Although it’s in a therapeutic environment, the activities are like ones clients would do in real life. To the client, it doesn’t feel like a therapy session, but it gives our professionals insight into a client’s psyche. Everything from a client’s facial expressions to what they say can provide therapists with a greater understanding of their mental state. When busy in an activity, clients are usually more comfortable and relaxed. Their expressions and reactions are much more likely to reveal their true feelings.