Adam Blatner

Words and Images from the Mind of Adam Blatner

Action Explorations

Originally posted on July 18, 2018

This is a term I give for non-therapeutic psychodrama. It’s a new term, a new “field.” Really, it’s psychodrama applied to non-clinical problems or, indeed, n0t problems at all!

In it’s old form of “psychodrama” (about which I wrote several books and countless articles), it is also applicable in another way. While as psychodrama, it serves as a system of therapy, like psychoanalysis; but outside of the clinical model, I call it “action explorations,” and this may be applied as a form of life rehearsal or other purposes. Using a kind of simulation model, it may be applied to many enterprises in the world in general. It’s an extension of thinking about thinking.

It’s not meant to be therapeutic. Action exploration is not for the medical or clinical model. Dramatizing is part of our human potential, to say and think in terms of “if.” We explore the limits of our ability to add to the “objective” world also our “interpretation, our narratives. In action exploration, nobody is pretend-ing to be an authority about normality and pathology. I think this needs to be recognized explicitly. After all,  “therapeutic” can be anything! A sunny day can be therapeutic. If one has something to do and it’s raining and that prevents distraction, a rainy day can be therapeutic.

Psychodrama as a clinical field benefitted from professionalism, especially in that it functioned as a type of psychotherapy. But in a larger sense, psycho-sociodrama is also a method for more consciously approaching life: It’s not "therapy" insofar as the people involved may not in most senses be thought of as "sick." It’s life expan-sion. Some psycho-dramatists and candidates do more of this. Or some of this. So what is being discussed is certainly valid, though I personally find it not so very relevant. But there is this other facet that I believe is growing: experimentation and exploration.

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