Here Valerie shares her insights on creativity, addiction, recovery, healing and psychodrama.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had a client sitting in my office tell me some version of “nothing terrible happened to me in my childhood, my family was fine. No one beat me, I was fed and clothed. I didn’t have any traumas.” Yet in their adult lives, these clients are struggling…
Last week I had the experience of witnessing the intense energy of celebrity first hand. Because of the work I did at the Jazz Foundation of America, I had the privilege of watching Bono up close as he performed for a JFA benefit at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem.
“When it gets down to it, there’s only ever really one person in the audience, no matter how big the crowd.”
Bono, one of the world’s most iconic performers, describes his relationship to the audience, and perhaps the audience representing our first audience, our families.
”You can’t heal what you can’t feel.” – Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse
Sharon Wegsheider-Cruse, a pioneer in the recovery movement and founder of Onsite Workshops in Tennessee, is talking about the unpaved, yet ultimately rewarding road of recovery.
“I’m an actor who believes we all have triggers to any stage of emotion. It’s not always easy to find but it’s still there.”
– Hugh Jackman
Hugh Jackman’s quote alludes to the fact that the actor has to access all of his or her emotions in order to deliver an authentic performance.
“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”
– Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Research shows that those with strong faith of some kind recover from illnesses more quickly and are better adjusted individuals. Believing in a power greater than ourselves seems to make us feel better.
Stella Adler said, “growth as an actor and as a human being are synonymous.”
I have always noticed the parallels between my work as a therapist and the work of an actor preparing for a role. We both study human behavior. We both look at underlying character motivations. We both study the expression of emotion. We both strive to get the best performances, either out of ourselves or another. While the destination of the work is different, the journey to get there is often the same.
Decades ago, the founder of psychodrama, JL Moreno said, “the body remembers what the mind forgets.” Moreno was speaking about how trauma gets stored in our bodies on a cellular level. Recent research is validating Moreno’s earlier statement.