If you’ve read our blogs for any length of time, you know that something we pride ourselves on here at the Iris Healing Retreat is the sheer number of therapy modalities we offer. When you come to us, no matter your addiction, one of our professionals sits down with you and figures out the right kind of treatment for your addiction. For many of our clients, this involves a combination of modalities: many include cognitive behavior therapy, twelve-step programs, and the like. One we’re using more and more is called “experiential therapy.” We’ve seen quite a bit of success in using this therapy to help with addiction and other issues at our trauma healing retreat.

Experiential Therapy

If you say the word “experiential” out loud, you might hear yourself say the word “experience.” That’s a big part of what this therapy is: a series of experiences. When we tend to think of therapy, the image that comes to mind is from TV and movies: a wood-paneled office, a patient lying back in a chair, a therapist asking them questions, bookshelf in the back. Experiential therapy is the opposite of that. Experiential therapy brings experiences into the therapy.

So, in this therapy, it might involve the patient playing various sports. Really. It might also include something like role-playing, where the patient will pretend to be a different person or play a role where the therapist does as well. Additionally, it can include activities as diverse as caring for animals and guided imagery. You might be reading all of this and think: “OK, that sounds like quite a bit of fun, but is it actually therapy?” Yes. In the right hands, it is.

trauma healing retreat

Trauma Healing Retreat: Experts on Experiential Therapy

For experiential therapy to be effective, it has been guided by certified medical professionals. A game of catch, wiffleball, kickball or something similar can be a great way to go through experiential therapy. However, without a medical professional overseeing it, guiding it, then it’s just a fun time outside. That’s where the Iris Healing Retreat pros come in so handy. They can structure the experiential therapy in such a way that the patient gets the benefit of the “fun” aspects as well as the far more critical (at least in terms of addiction) therapeutic ones as well.

One More Tool in the Toolbox

Experiential therapy has become more popular in recent years for several reasons. One of the biggest reasons is that it’s proven to be very effective for people who don’t respond to traditional therapy so well. While the standard cognitive behavior therapy model has proven to be highly effective for hundreds of thousands of people or more, it’s not for everyone. Some people just aren’t predisposed, for a variety of reasons, to more standard therapy.

That’s where experiential therapy comes in. This particular kind of therapy has been proven to work for those who may not be able to glean any benefit from other forms of therapy. Here at Iris, we’ll structure your treatment plan to your specific needs. Some of our patients do well with cognitive behavior therapy and some experiential therapy. Some are experiential therapy exclusively. Others don’t really fit for either of those kinds of therapy but they fit exactly perfectly with plenty of other forms of therapy. The key is that here at Iris, we have a kind of therapy that will work for you.

We know that we have several people who have been to other rehab facilities. They’ve tried other kinds of therapy, therapy modalities and more, and it all just didn’t work for them. Over the years, we’ve found that much of that is because other locations used more of “one size fits all” model. They might not have recognized it as such, but that’s what they were doing. So, instead of tailoring their therapy to the individual, they basically did their therapy to the individual and hoped for the best. At the Iris Healing Retreat, we do the opposite. We structure your healing around you.

Experiential Therapy and Beyond

Often, when we tell people about experiential therapy, they don’t always believe that it’s real. They think it’s something we made up or something that’s brand new. The truth is that this kind of therapy has been around since the ’70s. Sometimes, it’s even referred to as “existential therapy.”  We’ve used it many times to help folks to resolve their underlying issues in a way that works for them. Maybe this works for you, maybe it doesn’t. But, when you come to us, we can put together an individualized plan that will be right for you. To start that process, schedule a free consultation with our pros. All you have to do is call (844) 663-4747.