Vocal Psychotherapy is ‘the use of breath, sounds, vocal improvisation, songs and dialogue within a client therapist relationship to promote interpersonal growth and change,’ (Austin 2008).
Based on principles from attachment and trauma theory, and psychoanalysis, vocal psychotherapy enables the client to develop a deeper sense of integration between past and present, and a greater capacity to recognise and manage their emotions.
Vocalising together with the therapist offers the client new ways of relating with themselves and others and exploring issues within identity, intimacy and being ‘seen’. It provides a space where painful memories can be explored safely, and opportunities to repair psychological wounds. It also enables people to connect with and use their voice as a rich inner resource which can be used to reduce anxiety and support general wellbeing.
Neurologic Music Therapy® (NMT) is an evidence-based treatment system that uses standardised, research-based techniques to treat the brain using specific elements of music such as rhythm, melody, or tempo.
The Neurologic Music Therapist is a stimulus specialist who is trained in the neuroscience of music perception, music production/creation, and music cognition.
The therapist uses standardised techniques to address non-musical goals, for example:
• Physical movement
• Improved cognition.
The therapist focuses on the music as therapy, emphasising specific elements of music in the construction of therapeutic exercises, to optimise function and/or reroute neuropathways to achieve improved functionality.
Research has shown that rhythm and music are able to prime motor, cognition, and speech and do so at a subconscious level. Music can be used to help build new connections in the brain (called neuropathways) thus improving brain function and allowing one to lead a more productive and functional life.
Mindfulness encourages us to be more present and accepting of our inner experience.
Practising non-judgmental, compassionate awareness has been shown to help people better manage anxiety, stress, depression and even deal physical pain more effectively.
Mindfulness activities such working with our body and breath, simple movement, voice work andsound-making can have many positive effects including:
• Soothing our nervous system
• Producing feel good hormones
• Lowering our heart rates and reducing our blood pressure.
Linda incorporates aspects of mindfulness into her music therapy practice and has also devised an effective way of working with people online, when attending in person is not possible. The benefits of mindfulness are well documented and it is increasingly used in health and education settings.
Belltree Music Therapy helps vulnerable people across Sussex to connect through music.
Your donation could help someone have a one-to-one session to build their communication skills, or to attend a group session to help build stronger relationships.