“If you ever find yourself in the wrong story, leave.”
Mo Willems, Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

March Announcements

A New Location for the Center for Culture and Sandplay

We are moving to Brandywine, Maryland

Dear Colleagues,

It has been a joy to work with you here in College Park for the past ten years. We are now taking the next step in our transition and moving to Brandywine, Maryland. The move will likely be in the setting-up stage during the month of May.

There have been so many meaningful sand sessions at the Center for Culture and Sandplay. For many of you there were significant moments of transformation in the sand with your colleagues. The memories of your work will be carried forward, metaphorically, in the symbols you used. Your work has been profound, bridging individual unconscious healing with transpersonal human spirit. Thank you for your presence, the gift of depth, and the honor to witness your representations in sand.

Our move to Brandywine includes a magical morph from our 4-room collection of symbols to a smaller but separate space of its own. In any transition there is grief -- a letting go - a growing forward. Once we are set up in the new space I will plan an open house and will be delighted to welcome you to take in the new world of symbols.

I will continue with individual and small group consults through March and probably most of April before I pack. If you wish to do a personal scene before we move please let me know. More about advanced training below.

We welcome your continued support. I am able to pass along what I have learned because of your referrals. You understand the integrity we hold for the work in sand as we continue to support your work with clients. I will now take a deep breath and move forward with the transition to a new space, a new formation of symbols, and a new professional practice.

With Much Gratitude, Dr.Dee

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April: Trauma Healing Through Narrative Sand Therapy
(for Level II participants and advanced practitioners)
presenter: Dee Preston-Dillon, Ph.D.
Thursday, April 28th 8:45-4:00pm
Contact: The Institute of Advanced psychotherapy

March: Dr. Preston-Dillon is presenting The Power of Symbols and Metaphors at the Johns Hopkins University, graduate counseling student organization.

Summer: We are planning to do one retreat at a retreat facility, and one workshop at the Brandywine location. Details will be announced when finalized.

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Philosophy: Advanced training in the clinical use of sand helps therapists to focus on the process of co-transference. While an introduction to sand should offer a wide range of ideas for work with diverse populations, boundaries for responding to clients, and the appropriate use of sand; advanced work offers clinicians experience and feedback to deepen insights and skills.

And, while an introduction to sand can be done in a large group, advanced sessions require more safety, immediacy, and presence to participants' sand scenes. These three principles are absolutely vital to authentic reflection on the process. Therapists must have a sense of the primacy of confidentiality and integrity while in training. Without in-depth exploration the use of sand remains an external observation and vulnerable to clinician projections. The danger is that the process begins to serve the therapist rather than the client. Without practiced boundaries and insight into personal dynamics there is the risk of misappropriation of sand and manipulation of the process. Advanced training to understand and respond to client work involves more practiced ways to conceptualize and facilitate sand therapy.

Over the last decade, in our efforts to follow best practices and ethical considerations, our advanced training has remained focused on small groups and individual work. In the traditions of Kalffian sandplay training, we encourage clinicians to pursue individual work in sand, to immerse in a series of sand scenes, and study case work and the literature.

Private Consults Continue through April . . .

The Clinician Must Have Time to Pause . . . to Honor the Healer Within.

Advanced individual sessions are not therapy. Advanced sessions provide safety for a meaning-filled experience, for quiet reflection away from the exposure inevitable in large trainings. An hour and a half to explore the connection between symbols and self honors the healer within. Clinicians who come for individual and small group consults often share how valuable insights culled here ripple out to their clients. Our focus: to engage your creative self through symbols and metaphors . . . to amplify clinical sensibilities, and to honor the depth of insights within.

For an appointment for private consultations, to join a small group, or set up a staff retreat please email your request to sandplayvoices@cultureplay.com. Private consults are for clinicians of any specialization; not only for sand therapists. Consults are set on a once-a-month basis. Each 90 minute session is $120, and $160 for two hours. For colleagues who travel for a series of sessions we will assist with locating local accommodations.

Please keep our creativity consults in mind for your colleagues in non-clinical professions. IMAGINE is our framework to offer sessions to enhance creativity and explore personal narrative -- yoga for the creative soul.

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Need assistance with your research paper, thesis, article, or other professional documents, including APA style check? Our colleague Meg Chatfield is accepting projects for professional editing. Meg comes highly recommended and has worked directly with Dr. Preston-Dillon. Find information on her website: PsychologyEditor.com

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Looking for custom symbols to enhance your practice? Tiffany creates unique objects for your sand trays. Find her on Facebook: Sand Symbols by Tiffany and click on Photos to find samples of her work. Also, look for her guest feature on our site/blog soon, with photos.

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Our blog (where you are now!) will soon take over for the website. The Cultureplay.com address will still be valid and will take you directly to the blog. We wanted to make you aware of this change so you don't think you've found yourself in the wrong spot!

We now have a separate space to highlight special guests from the play therapy community. If any of our colleagues would like to be a guest, please email sandplayvoices@cultureplay.com with your feature idea.

We wish you all well with your own spring transitions!

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