In honor of this year’s Creative Arts Therapies week, the third week in March, I’m dedicating a blog post to my fellow creative art therapists co-workers. In my current full-time position, I have the privilege of working alongside a music and an art therapist. Together we make up the Wellness program of a larger department that serves adults with developmental disabilities (DD). Although I appreciate the mufti-faceted team I work with (including respite workers, social workers, vocational trainers, and recreational therapists), I truly value working on a creative arts therapy team. I am fortunate to be able to work and collaborate with them daily. Although dance/movement therapists work in an array of clinical settings, it is a unique situation if they are able to work alongside other creative arts therapists. Here are ten reasons why it’s great to be a part of a creative arts therapy team.
- I work alongside co-workers that truly understand my craft. My co-workers might not know the nuanced ins and outs of dance/movement therapy (DMT), but at their core they get it.
- The collaboration between me and my co-workers inspires collaboration between our clients.
- Together we provide our clients with various avenues of expression. For example, when working on a client-led fashion show, clients integrated elements from the three modalities. One of our clients decided she would like to create an angel costume for the final show. The art therapist helped her create a costume, the music therapist encouraged her to choose and sing to music that fit this theme, and I helped her embody the movement elements of an angel for the performance. This client still expresses gratitude for the experience saying, “I’ve never done anything like that before,” and, “I’ve never moved like that. I had to concentrate.”
- My co-workers advocate for the creative arts therapies. I don’t have to do it all alone.
- Each one of our approaches compliments and enhances the three modalities which further promotes therapeutic growth in our clients.
- Each of our lenses allows us to build rapport with our clients. Whereas I might speak about a client in terms of their movement effort life (as discussed in Laban Movement Analysis), the music therapist might speak about how this person sings in group or which instrument the person chooses to engage with. The art therapist might discuss materials the client enjoys using in art therapy. All of this informs us about our clients so that we can understand and know them at a deeper level.
- I have co-workers that I can bounce ideas off of. I trust that they will give me helpful, honest and creative feedback.
- We learn from and challenge each other.
- I work alongside fellow artists.
- We laugh and laugh and laugh as recuperation from our usually crazy workday as creative arts therapists.
Happy Creative Arts Therapies week!