Expressive Arts Therapy is a therapeutic approach that uses various forms of creative expression to help people explore their emotions, develop self-awareness, and address personal challenges. It integrates multiple artistic disciplines, including visual arts, music, dance, drama, and writing, to help emotional growth and healing. 

Carl Jung and other early therapists used art in their work, helping to develop Expressive Arts Therapy. This therapy focuses on the creative process, not the final product, so anyone can do it, even without artistic skills. The goal is to give people a safe place to express their feelings, find hidden emotions, and understand themselves better.


How Does Expressive Arts Therapy Work?

In Expressive Arts Therapy,  you create art to express their feelings and thoughts. There are many types of expressive arts to choose from, so you can pick one that resonates the most with you. Some of them include: 

  • Visual Arts: Drawing, painting, or sculpting can help visualise your emotions and experiences.
  • Music: Playing instruments, singing, or listening to music can evoke and process emotions.
  • Dance and Movement: Physical movement allows for the expression of feelings that may be difficult to verbalise.
  • Drama: Role-playing and storytelling can provide new perspectives and insights.
  • Writing: Journaling, poetry, and creative writing help articulate thoughts and emotions.

You don’t need to have experience or skills in any of these expressive arts. Your therapist will most likely combine a few therapies to address specific issues. For example, someone dealing with trauma might use painting to externalise and process their pain, followed by movement exercises to release tension.

What Can Expressive Arts Therapy Help With?

EAT helps you beyond mental health conditions. Better creativity and problem-solving skills and higher confidence levels are some valuable benefits they’ve experienced. It can help you treat: 

  • Emotional regulation
  • Trauma recovery
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Depression
  • Self-esteem and confidence
  • Social skills
  • Chronic illness
  • Grief and loss

I’m here to support your healing journey. Take the first step today. 

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Jennifer Pinto
Registered social worker, MSW, RSW