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Individual Counseling for Children

At Art It Out, we use art as a vehicle for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This presents a tangible and memorable way to teach children and teens how to recognize how our thoughts, emotions and behaviors are all interconnected and influence each other. CBT is very helpful in aiding individuals to learn to recognize and change any distorted or negative thinking patterns. Children may often illustrate thoughts, feelings, or events that are difficult to verbalize. This presents insight into the child’s inner world, which allows negative or harmful thoughts to be challenged.

 

Combining art and CBT improves the child’s overall engagement in therapy and presents the following opportunities:

  1. Creative activities provide a great way to break the ice! Children might not feel comfortable participating in talk therapy, but it’s much easier to express themselves in a drawing or hands-on activity. 

  2. Understanding the relationship between your thoughts, emotions, and consequent behaviors is often easier once explained through art and play. Through writing and illustrations, children can process and practice relevant CBT tools and techniques.

  3. Art activities help improve children’s comfort level and understanding of facial expressions, moods, and emotions.

Art paired with CBT techniques presents further opportunity to:

  • Challenge Cognitive Distortions

  • Increase Positive Thoughts

  • Improve Self-Talk

  • Recognize Core Beliefs

  • Improve Mood

  • Increase Flexibility

  • Improve Self-Esteem and Resiliency

  • Manage Anxiety or Depression

  • Learn to See a New Perspective

  • Challenge Fears

  • Manage Stress & Worries

  • Practice Solution-Based Thinking

We use art techniques to create tangible reminders of coping skills. Looking at these reminders outside of our therapy sessions will encourage the child to implement the new skills, thus helping the skills and strategies generalize into everyday life.

Additionally, we also implement behavior management strategies in our work with children and teens. We are big believers of consistent positive reinforcement in order to help our clients to:

  • Recognize and Regulate Emotions (including personalized coping skills)

  • Follow Multiple Step Directions

  • Manage Frustration

  • Improve Cognitive Flexibility, Reduce a Rigid Mindset

  • Practice Effective Communication Strategies, including Active Listening 

  • Enhance Overall Independence 

  • Improve Personal Motivation and Ownership

  • Increase Self-Control

  • Increase Confidence

  • Reinforce Positivity 

To promote positive behaviors and daily interactions, we often work as a unit with parents, teachers, and guidance counselors. In addition to our in-office sessions, we offer:

  • School Observations

  • Weekly Check in with School and/or Parents

  • Personalized Action Plan

  • Positive Reinforcement System