Maria Gabriela (Gaby) Biscardi
Denisse Albornoz and Gioel Gioacchino
Gaby, a life coach, designed this technique in collaboration with her academic tutor, a psychodrama director, and an excellent group of psychodrama students in Casa Hogar Corazón de Jesús, Valencia (Venezuela). The exercise was used to discover and improve the self-esteem of teenagers underperforming in high school. It was part of a process of 10 psychodrama workshops to explore students’ sense of self using visualization and role play. Gaby has been using this method in many contexts to unveil emotions and self-perceptions from different angles.
We are trying to understand how young people understand failure and success in their life - in relationship to their friends, family members, and authority figures. How do young people see themselves through the eyes of the most significant people in their lives? How do these perceptions affect their self-esteem?
Young people’s understanding of themselves has consequences on their sense of empowerment, on their willingness to study, work, engage in community, and their ability to visualize their future. A positive self-concepts matters for the whole community.
To set up the space for the workshop, make sure that there is an atmosphere of trust amongst the group. As you introduce the workshop, present the space as a judgement-free environment. Encourage participants to open up to the process and be playful - doing some warm up exercises might be very useful to make sure people are ready to play. Welcome people to share their thoughts and feelings freely. It's a good idea to ask for a verbal commitment to keep other people's words and experiences confidential, unless there is something that could threaten the physical or mental integrity of participants.
When using this technique for research purposes, the main researcher should ask direct permission to write any details about the stories shared.
It is also important to explain that during the debrief session, people are discouraged from providing advice or express any sort of judgement on other experiences. Instead, encourage people to listen with an open heart and mind while paying attention to what is happening inside of each person while acting and witnessing others.
This is a psychodrama technique, a creative therapeutic approach which allows individuals to express internal conflict utilizing guided drama and role playing to work through problems. Developed Jacob Levy Moreno, psychodrama integrates elements from theater and psychology. The process of psychodrama begins with a warm up, followed by the action and finally a sharing session.
Facilitate a debrief by asking:
Encourage people to explore their own truth. Explicitly discourage participants to provide advice to others - instead, respect each other's truth and acknowledge each other's feelings. A recommendation is to start the comments with: 'what happen to me with this process was…'
This is a reflective, fun technique that takes the participants through a journey of exploring their own joys and fears.
The technique allows participants to reflect on their stories, and become aware of the impressions they hold on themselves and others. It does so by playing with humor and with the the body to go deep into feelings and perceptions without being invasive.
This a technique that can dig into emotions, giving a really deep understanding on how family members, authority figures and friends are in influencing their concept of self and self-esteem. To implement it effectively, you need to build an atmosphere of trust among the young participants. It is a good idea to start the technique with some warm up activities.
Be aware of the body signs while participants are doing the visualization. Be aware of the words that cause more impression. Always finish with a debrief – a lot of important perspective can be revealed in it.
You can adapt this technique based on the type of group and environment! For example, Gaby used this technique to understand how students relate to their school grades.
No additional resources for this technique…
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