Besides Dramatherapy, these are the other solutions I offer in my intention to inspire personal change, encourage reflection and awareness, promote creativity, and foster human connections.
Arts & Mental Health
Would you like to know more about using arts in mental health settings?
If you have ever played an instrument, danced, been on stage performing or acting, spent time painting or drawing, or have felt emotionally immersed in a piece of visual or performing art, you will know the feeling of momentarily connecting to something deeper, or higher. A moment of connection where your rational thoughts are nowhere to be found, and where perhaps you experience some kind of alignment with life. This is the power of art in all its forms, and by default, the power of arts therapies, of which Dramatherapy is an example.
Whilst there aren't extensive studies that prove specific results from using arts in mental health settings, I always appeal to your experiences of connecting to art in its many forms. Do you remember how it felt? Do you remember how it perhaps allowed you to do things you never thought you could, or connect to experiences you had never even considered?
When we are creating, we are not thinking rationally. We are feeling, intuiting, and connecting in processes that are evolutionary more primitive, but personally much deeper.
Prior to my training in Dramatherapy, I used to be a Forum Theatre Practitioner, whereby I used theatre to explore and find solutions for problematic situations in young people's lives. This, just like Dramatherapy, can be used in any setting, with any kind of individual.
I am available to consult with individuals and organisations interested in implementing arts-based activities or therapeutic interventions in their service provision, by facilitating the delivery or creation of programmes.
Would you like to know how Dramatherapy can be used in clinical settings?
The majority of my speaking and lecturing commitments have been aligned with my clinical experiences within addiction, HIV, and gay men's wellbeing. I have spoken at events specifically catered to the LGBTQ+ community, such as Let's Talk About Gay Sex and Drugs, as well as at professional conferences, such as The British Association of Dramatherapists' annual conference.
I currently teach as a guest lecturer at Anglia Ruskin University - Cambridge, where I work with Dramatherapy trainees with regards to my clinical work in addiction and with the LGBTQ+ community.
Anything I can write for you?
I love writing. It is one of my favourite ways to explore thoughts, feelings, memories, insights. I write my own blog, which has moved from strictly professional considerations to more personal sharings and insights. I review queer theatre and performance for a LGBTQ arts online platform, and I am currently writing a memoir, and a one-man show. I also write about personal experiences for relevant purposes of visibility. Please have a look below at some of my previous work by following the images/links - and don't forget to follow the weekly blog on this website.
RYAN'S HEALING CONTINUUM
The Healing Continuum was a name I came up with which defines and symbolises how I perceive the work that I do, but also how I live my life. A philosophy of life, if you wish. It's a mix of professional and personal insights, but definitely a greater focus on personal experiences and how they may inspire others.
This was my first blog. It was the first name I created for my private practice, and the blog included two features: a monthly reflection on a topic or circumstance that I had facilitated in a therapy session, and a monthly "ask the practitioner" feature, where people could send me questions anonymously, and I would answer them via the blog.
This is the platform I currently write reviews for. The LGBTQ Arts Review is an online space with a focus on promoting LGBTQ+ artists and work, as well as Queer Theatre and Drag Performance. It has been a pleasure to go see a variety of performances around London and be inspired by fellow queer and LGBTQ+ artists.
Finally, a piece I wrote for Diversity Role Models - a charity I have been volunteering with for many years - about the mental health impact of homophobic bullying in schools. Check it out here: Homophobic Bullying - Then and Now.