Sandtray Therapy

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Sandtray Therapy

Sandtray offers a non-verbal means to work through problems, communicate about yourself, and connect with who you are at the deepest level. It provides a quiet universe in which to transform bodily sensations, emotions, and life experiences into visible, three-dimensional form and can be very effective in healing trauma.

Sandtray builds on the natural ability we have as children to explore, experiment, and learn through play.  It provides a language through which to express feelings for which there are no words, and can provide access to deep personal wisdom and a sense of spiritual grounding.

You have access to a tray partially filled with sand, and hundreds of miniature figures to use in whatever way you choose. The figures represent as much of the natural, material, historical, spiritual, and mythological world as possible. Most adults find that doing Sandtray activates a curiosity and energy we don’t often contact in daily life. The result can be surprising, delightful, and deeply meaningful.

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What happens in a Sandtray  session?

You are free to choose the figures that draw you, to create a scene, or simply to work with the sand. There is no right way to do a sandtray, and no need for artistic talent or specific intention. Most clients know when their tray is complete.

I witness you quietly with curiosity, open mindedness and respect, noting each of the figures you use. I bring to bear the experience of my own Sandtray process, ongoing training, and knowledge of the multilayered symbolic meaning of the figures. This information, as well as the relationship we have developed, enables me to provide a free and protected space in which it is safe to surrender to your experience.

You may have a question or share a comment, but mostly you work in silence. Afterwards, we look at the tray together. This is the time for you to say anything about it that you choose. You will likely feel the sacredness of what you have created, the deep place in you that it touches. In order to honor this mysterious depth, we do not interpret what you have made but rather let it stand as an expression of an emerging wisdom that will grow over time. After you leave, I take photos which are available for us to review at a later time if you wish.

When and why would I do Sandtray?

The tray and figures are always available in my office, but clients generally don’t make a tray until they feel comfortable and safe in our relationship. Although I might offer the option based on what is coming up, the choice is always yours.

You may be looking for ways to introduce more playfulness and creativity in your life, to express feelings you don’t understand or that seem too big to handle. Doing a tray can provide a transition from the busyness of outside life into your body and internal world. Or you may realize that trying to figure out the solution to a problem hasn’t worked, and you are ready to try a different approach, one which bypasses your intellect. Because Sandtray gives access to layers of experience that are pre-verbal and long forgotten to the conscious mind, it can be particularly helpful in healing wounds from early childhood.

What are the benefits of Sandtray?

Sandplay stimulates the body, the imagination, the emotions, and verbal expression. Current research in neuroscience indicates that genuine healing requires more than verbalization alone; deeper integration calls for the kind of multilevel experience which Sandplay offers.

Sandtray provides a way to get to know yourself and be known without having to talk, explain, or defend. There is a unique depth of relationship which occurs during a Sandtray process, as you are witnessed accessing your deepest truth and vulnerability.

Over time, you may discover feelings and experiences long buried in your unconscious, participate in the birth of your authentic self, feel compassion for the wounding you’ve experienced and respect for the courage that has brought you this far. You become able to participate in life more fully as you get in touch with all of who you are.

Being a good fit is important

When you're ready, schedule a free 30-minute phone consultation by filling out the contact form or calling me at 816.305.9828