Author Archives: Rebecca Wilkinson, ATR-BC, LCPAT

Art Therapy in Strengths-Based Drug and Alcohol Treatment, Sagebrush, VA, Saturday, Nov 8, 2015 2-4 pm

Art Therapy in a holistic, strengths-based drug and alcohol treatment center
When:  Sunday, November 8, 2015  2pm- 4pm
Where:  Sagebrush, 7921 Jones Branch Drive, St 400 McLean, VA 22102
Presenter: Gioia Chilton, PhD, ATR-BC

Sagebrush Welcomes the Potomac Art Therapy Association!
This event is free and everyone is welcome! Art supplies provided! 1.5 CE hours provided by PATA will be awarded for attendees. Certificates will be provided at the event

Come learn about the use of art therapy in a holistic, strengths-based drug and alcohol treatment center. Sagebrush Treatment Center creates a space for healing that provides authentic and fundamental changes in our clients through deeper, more comprehensive treatment which includes art therapy, psychotherapy, group therapy, expressive and creative arts therapy, mediation, yoga, nutrition, physical fitness and outdoor challenge course experiences. Learn how art therapy is utilized in this trauma-informed innovative program to help clients express emotions, uncover blockages to growth, and access inner strengths.
The event also includes Q & A, Art making and exchange.

Art Therapy & Creative Self Care Workshop, Phx, AZ, Sunday, Dec 6, 2015 2-5 pm

Art Therapy & Creative Self Care Workshop
WHERE: 1014 N 2nd Street Phoenix, AZ 85004
WHEN: Sunday, December 6at 2:00pm – 5:00pm
CEUS: 3 Clock Hours NBCC Approved through an NBCC provider, Creative Wellbeing
JOIN US! Master Level Mental Health Professionals (Art Therapists, Counselors,, Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists, Social Workers and Substance Abuse Counselors) and students.

PRESENTER: Lanie Smith MA ATR owner of Integrative Art Therapy, is a Registered Art Therapist with 7+ years of clinical experience working with a wide range of populations both nationally and internationally. Early in her career she was able to publish research to support the efficacy of Art Therapy while working with the National Institute of Health. She now specializes in individual and group services with adults to address mental and behavioral health issues throughout the greater Phoenix area. Lanie’s true passion combines art and nature to promote self-care among women and helping professionals for the treatment and prevention of vicarious trauma, compassion fatigue, and burnout.

YOU WILL WALK AWAY WITH

  • Overview of Art Therapy’s foundational framework known as the Expressive Therapies Continuum along with the risks and benefits of practicing Art Therapy
  • Introduction and experiential in the healing properties of Environmental Art Therapy for increased awareness of the relationship between natural and man-made environments
  • Hands on experience of the creative process for self-care for prevention of burnout/compassion fatigue
  • Workshop also includes opportunities for self-reflection and group discussion/sharing

SUPPORTIVE PRESENTERS:
Rebecca Wilkinson MA ATR-BC LCPAT A therapist with over 20 years of clinical experience, specializing in Art Therapy. Through extensive practice with individuals struggling with severe illness she has developed an appreciation for the power of the human spirit to prevail even in the darkest moments. Rebecca has more recently broadened her scope to work with people who, although they may not identify a desire or a need to seek professional counseling, also want to feel better, more engaged and energized, more connected to others and them¬selves, and more empowered in their personal and professional lives. Rebecca is an experienced workshop facilitator for corporations and government agencies presenting on a variety of wellness topics and is the founder of Creative Wellbeing Workshops in Washington, D.C. and Tucson.

Sally Markley MA ATR A licensed psychotherapist and a registered art therapist specializing in couples, family’s and individuals. Her specialty is relationships and trauma recovery. Her counseling services foster a supportive process to further growth and development. Enabling you to experience a greater sense of awareness, a stronger sense of self-esteem and to develop more tools for coping. She has been working with adults, children and families for over fifteen years. Sally has a long standing history working in Tucson for children adults and families and, currently has a strong private practice designed to meet your individual or family needs.

SPONSORED BY: Creative Wellbeing Workshops is a National Board for Certified Counselors Approved Continuing Education Provider (#6566). Creative Wellbeing Workshops may award NBCC approved clock hours for events or programs that meet NBCC requirements. Creative Wellbeing Workshops maintains responsibility for the content of this event.

REFUND POLICY: Full price Refund available up to the day of November 2nd Half price available up to the day of November 16th

Hosted by Prescott College For the Liberal Arts and Social Justice Bronze Sponsorship

SUPPORTED BY: PSA ART AWAKENINGS Empowerment and Recovery through Creativity

Creative Wellbeing Workshops, LLC has been approved by the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) as an Approved Continuing Education Provider (#6566). Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. Creative Wellbeing Workshops is solely responsible for all aspects of those programs.

The Other Side of Masks

“I reveal myself one mask at a time”
Stephen Dunn

Courage Mask by Gioia

Courage Mask by Gioia

Rebecca and I have recently been using masks in our work. Although they’re often used in art therapy, we were both conflicted about what they represent. Are they meant to hide or protect some aspect of ourselves? Do they reflect what we show to the world and obscure our “true” selves. Or do they help us uncover and discover parts of ourselves? In keeping with our efforts to find positive reframes for the way we approach our work, we decided that we could use them to highlight and celebrate some empowering aspect of ourselves.

For example, in a recent workshop, Rebecca had a client decorate a mask that she said was devoted to “What I keep from myself.” Her client said that, “It’s not so much about what I present to the world. I feel like I am authentic and people get me. It’s more about my sense that I feel like I don’t know myself.” She chose a mask in the shape of a butterfly and delicately decorated it with soft pastels in purple and yellow hues which she said looked like a sunset. She was surprised at how visually pleasing it was and realized that it represented a sense of beauty and gentleness which she tended to minimize in herself.

When Gioia uses maskmaking with people in recovery, she suggests that they explore the courage that they had to draw upon when they decided to take on the disease of drug or alcohol addiction. We like to define “Courage” as exercising the willingness to accomplish goals in the face of opposition, either internal or external. The work “courage” and “encourage” come from the French root word coeur, which means, “heart.” Courage can manifest in the following ways:

Bravery (Valor)
The ability to do what needs to be done despite fear-not being fearless but overcoming one’s fear. May be physical valor shown by warriors, but may also be doing what is right despite consequences, facing a serious illness, or resisting peer pressure and standing up for what is right.

Persistence (Perseverance/Industriousness)
Finishing what one is trying to accomplish despite obstacles, difficulties, or discouragement. Taking care of business, staying on task, mustering the gritty will to perform in the face of boredom, difficulty, and the temptation to do something easier.

Integrity (Authenticity/Honesty/Sincerity)
Taking responsibility for how one feels and what one does, genuine presentation of oneself to others as well as the internal sense that one is a morally coherent being. Being true to oneself, practicing what one preaches, accurately representing privately and publicly one’s internal state, intentions, and commitments.

Vitality (Zest/ Enthusiasm/Vigor/Energy)
Feeling alive, having “joie de vivre,” energy that is experienced not as nervousness, or hyperactivity, but as good energy available to the self and visible to others. A sense of physical well-being and vigor, as well an activated positive emotional state, a sense of enthusiasm.

Although many of Gioia’s clients, when they think of courage, don’t identity with bravery, they do connect with persistence and grit in the face of adversity and with the renewed vitality that they are experiencing in recovery. Rebecca’s client showed courage by addressing the disparity between her internal sense of herself and what the outside world sees in her. Although she was initially struggling with connecting to positive aspects of herself, she immediately got it when she saw the beauty and grace in her butterfly mask.

So as you think about masks that you might wear in the world, think about ones that would celebrate something that you want to recognize and cultivate.

Positively yours, Gioia and Rebecca

Art directive
Make a mask of a courageous person you admire on an outline of a mask or store-bought prepared masks (available at craft stores). Decorate the mask by exploring what comes to you when you think about your fearless ideal. You can draw, paint or use collage or cut paper. What characteristics would this figure have? Is this a person, animal or mythical creature? Of the different kinds of courage, such as bravery, persistence, integrity, or vitality, which might it feature? Write about situations where you might benefit from wearing this mask.

Crafting a Life Full of Meaning

When Rebecca and I work with caregivers and therapists, we often find that when they bring up meaning in life as an aspect of happiness that their eyes really light up. Just last month, as we spoke to the staff of Maryland’s Child Advocacy Center, we knew we were seeing deeply committed people whose character strengths included kindness, compassion and a desire for justice. Feeling as if they made a difference energized these folks, who clearly had a deep sense that their lives were mission-driven. One child worker told of racing across a field to catch up to a run-away child, her heart beating in her chest and mud covering her shoes.

Although having a life full of purpose and meaning may not be so dramatic all of the time, it’s often a well of deep and authentic happiness that can bring tremendous satisfaction and joy. One of our positive psychology heroes, Dr. Michael Steger, has done groundbreaking work in this area. He developed a short Meaning in Life Questionnaire which we highly recommend taking. which we highly recommend taking. This quick and interesting survey measures how much we are searching for meaning and how much meaning we feel we have in our lives at this moment.

Not surprisingly, it appears that experiencing meaning and purpose contributes significantly to life satisfaction, health, and wellbeing, to more positive emotions, higher levels of optimism, better self-esteem, fewer psychological problems, and lower mortality.

Be You

Be You-Gioia


If you want to experience more of a sense of meaning and purpose, one of the first steps is to figure out what is important to you, what you feel passionate about and what energizes you. For some people, like our friends the child protection workers, what gives you meaning might be making a difference one child at a time. For others it might be more mundane, like another one of the Child Advocacy staff, who disliked being on the frontlines and instead preferred behind the scenes making sure that everything functioned smoothly for the rest of her co-workers.

What do you find important and what gives your life meaning and purpose? Feel free to share on our Facebook page.

Positive art therapy: New directions in positive psychology, Fri, June 5, 2015, 6-7:30 pm, Wayne State, Detroit, MI, Extended workshops June 6 and 7

Positive Art Therapy: New Directions in Positive Psychology and Art Therapy Practice and Research
June 5th, 2015, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.
Extended Class and workshops, Sat and Sun, June 6 and 7, 2015
Wayne State, Detroit, MI,
146 DeRoy Auditorium
The lecture is offered free of charge.

Gioia Chilton, PhD, ATRHBC is a Provost Fellow and a graduate of Drexel University’s Creative Arts Therapies Ph.D. Program. Her dissertation, An Arts’Based Study of the Dynamics of Expressing Positive Emotions within the Intersubjective Art Making Process, was awarded the E. Paul Torrance Research Award for demonstrating rigor and excellence in the study’s design and findings. As an adjunct faculty member, Gioia has taught at Mount Mary University, the George Washington University, and Marymount University. Gioia is interested in mixed media and altered art, and has worked with children, adolescents and adults with mental health needs as a registered and board certified art therapist for 20 years. In 2010, she cofounded Creative Wellbeing Workshops, LLC, where she provides continuing education trainings on happiness strategies (www.creativewwellbeingworkshops.com). Dr. Chilton has also authored numerous articles, most recently coauthoring a chapter on artsbased research for the Oxford Handbook of Qualitative Research.

Positive Art Therapy: New Directions in Positive Psychology and Art Therapy Practice and Research
June 5th, 2015, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.
Extended Class and workshops, Sat and Sun, June 6 and 7, 2015
Wayne State, Detroit, MI,
146 DeRoy Auditorium
The lecture is offered free of charge.
For more information or to RSVP for any of these events, please contact ArtEd_ArtTherapy@wayne.edu or (313) 577-5469.
For more information or to RSVP for any of these events, please contact ArtEd_ArtTherapy@wayne.edu or (313) 577-5469.

Gioia Chilton, PhD, ATRHBC is a Provost Fellow and a graduate of Drexel University’s Creative Arts Therapies Ph.D. Program. Her dissertation, An Arts’Based Study of the Dynamics of Expressing Positive Emotions within the Intersubjective Art Making Process, was awarded the E. Paul Torrance Research Award for demonstrating rigor and excellence in the study’s design and findings. As an adjunct faculty member, Gioia has taught at Mount Mary University, the George Washington University, and Marymount University. Gioia is interested in mixed media and altered art, and has worked with children, adolescents and adults with mental health needs as a registered and board certified art therapist for 20 years. In 2010, she cofounded Creative Wellbeing Workshops, LLC, where she provides continuing education trainings on happiness strategies (www.creativewwellbeingworkshops.com). Dr. Chilton has also authored numerous articles, most recently coauthoring a chapter on artsbased research for the Oxford Handbook of Qualitative Research.

A reception will follow.

Gioia Chilton will also be teaching an extended class on Saturday, June 6th & Sunday, June 7th, which will be open to current art therapy students and alumni. This class will focus on discovering and capitalizing on character strengths and the importance of positive emotions in using creative techniques. Additionally, 1.2 CEUs or 3 – 13 SCECHs will be available to participating alumni. For more information or to RSVP for any of these events, please contact ArtEd_ArtTherapy@wayne.edu or (313) 577-5469.
A reception will follow.

Mandalas for Managing Stress and Increasing Wellbeing Smith Center, DC, Sat, Sept 12, 2015, 10 am-3 pm

Mandalas for Managing Stress and Increasing Wellbeing
Smith Center, DC, Sat, September 12, 2015, 10 am-3 pm
Rebecca Wilkinson, MA, ATR-BC, LCPAT and Gioia Chilton, PhD, ATR-BC
Saturday, September 12, 2015, 10:00 AM-3:00 PM
To Register: call 202 483 8600
Smith Center for Healing and the Arts
1632 U Street, NW
Washington, DC 20009

Mandalas for Managing Stress and Increasing Wellbeing

The Mandala serves to move us towards psychological growth,
expressing the idea of a safe refuge, inner reconciliation and wholeness.
Carl G. Jung, Mandala Symbolism

Mandalas, a Sanskrit word meaning for “containers of essence”, can serve as vessels into which we project our psyche and a visual reflection of our experience. It is then returned to us as a way of restoration. Mandalas can also be a means to set and focus an intention—in this case our focus will be on managing stress. We will outline elements of stress and explore what it means not only to reduce stress but to increase wellbeing for ourselves and others. Let’s reduce our stress and feel more joy, peace, energy, clarity and motivation!

This workshop is designed for all ranges of artistic experience–you need not consider yourself an artist to attend. All materials will be provided.

Snacks will also be provided. Bring a box lunch or lunch can also be gotten from healthy, reasonably priced restaurants in the neighborhood.

Objective 1) Attendees will be able to identify 3-5 signs of stress and 3-5 indicators of wellbeing.
Objectives 2) Attendees will be able to 3-5 strategies for reducing stress and increasing wellbeing.
Objectives 3) Attendees will be able to list 3 therapeutic benefits around using mandalas in art therapy as a stress reduction tool.

Suggested Donation $45
($55 with Continuing Education Credits* for mental health practioners) To register or for more information contact Smith Center by calling 202-483-8600 by visiting www.smithcenter.org or emailing heal@smithcenter.org
1632 U Street NW, Washington DC 20009
Metro accessible, Red & Green Lines

Smith Center programs are open to the community, and tailored to meet the needs of people affected by cancer. Classes and workshops are free or low cost on a pay-as-you-can basis, ensuring that our programs are accessible to everyone.

For mental health professionals
Creative Wellbeing Workshops is an NBCC Approved Continuing Education Provider (#6656) and may offer NBCC approved clock hours for events and programs that meet NBCC requirements. Creative Wellbeing Workshops is solely responsible for all aspects of the program.

The Best of Ourselves, Genentech Company, Santa Cruz, CA, Wed, July 15, 2015, 3-5 pm

Genentech Company
Santa Cruz, CA
The Best of Ourselves: Developing Our Highest Strengths to Increase Wellbeing
Wednesday, July 15, 2015, 3-5 pm
This is a closed event

In this workshop, we will explore the emerging science of wellbeing and look at strategies for improving the quality our lives so that we are not just surviving but also thriving. In keeping with the theme of “Self” we will explore positive identity by examining the strengths and resources that have helped us manage the complexities of our personal and professional lives. We will identify personal roadmaps for increasing wellbeing through identifying what we value most, through identifying and activating strengths in ourselves and those around us, and through increasing positive experiences in our lives. The workshop will be heavily experiential and interactive including writing, art making, and small group and larger group exercises.

Primary Objectives
Attendees will be able to:
1) Define wellbeing and briefly latest research on wellbeing
2) Outline domains of wellbeing
3) Identify strengths and resources that have help us survive and thrive in our personal and professional lives
4) Designate concrete and personally relevant strategies for increasing wellbeing

Drawing Strengths, Child Advocacy Center of Frederick County , Fri, June 19, 2015, 9 am-12 Pm

Child Advocacy Center of Frederick County
Drawing Strengths: Identifying and Developing Our Highest Potential
Who: Child Advocacy Center of Frederick County Staff
When: June 19, 2015 9 am -12 pm
Presenters: Rebecca Wilkinson, MA, LCPAT, ATR-BC and Gioia Chilton, PhD, ATR-BC
This is a closed event

Content: In this workshop, we will explore the strengths that bring us to the helping professions and that characterize the people we work with (staff and clients). We will use the creative process to become Strengths Spotters, discovering and activating strengths in ourselves and those around us. We will engage in experiential activities which leave us with renewed enthusiasm and passion for our work. Experiential activities include art making, writing, psychodrama, and small group and larger group exercises.

Primary Objectives:
1) Stress Reductio
2) Burnout Prevention
3) Renewal and Rejuvenation
4) Team Building

Getting Clear on Your Core Values

“When your values are clear to you, making decisions becomes easier.”
Roy Disney

Love and Humanity

Love and Humanity


Seems pretty straightforward-we assume we know what our values are, right?! But when we propose this activity in our workshops and groups, it often draws a blank at first. This may be partly because to many of us our values are so inherent to our understanding of life that we see them as fundamental truths about reality not as personal preferences. It can also be disorienting when we realize that others might identify with completely different values. This is a variation of the comparison bias–we tend to overestimate the similarities we share with others and to assume that others would think and behave the way we would.

Some values most of us share: family, freedom, dignity, love, respect, friendship. Others may be more personal and even seem contradictory: privacy, openness, honesty, sensitivity, efficiency, whimsy, frugality, luxury, austerity, diplomacy, power, independence, interdependence, strength, gentleness, simplicity, subtlety, exaggeration, sophistication, restraint, expressiveness, vitality, conservation, indulgence, beauty, comfort, expansiveness, containment. During some of our workshops, we give out an extensive list of values (click here) and have people circle the ones that are most essential to them.

Some of these values may resonate deeply for you and others may be difficult to appreciate. However, the beauty of this exercise is that it gives insight into the self–it brings into our conscious awareness things that we might take for granted about ourselves. It also illustrates the diversity of values that other people might embrace, values that might be different from ours, but might hold the same degree of importance. This is open a doorway to understanding. When we appreciate that other people are motivated by their values, (whether they are similar to or different than ours), we are more likely to attribute positive intentions to their behavior even if we don’t agree with their choices. This then leads to empathy and compassion (which, no surprise, Gioia and I value-after all we’re therapists!).

The ultimate payoff of getting in touch with our values is that, when we get really clear about what is important to us, it paves the way for guiding our lives. Things become simpler when we determine what overriding values we are working toward. If those decisions involve other people, outlining what values everyone is bringing to the table also helps get people on the same page.

Some of our core values at CWW:
Collaboration, creativity, connection, compassion (OK, so we like the C’s), love, beauty, gentleness, wellbeing, generosity, gratitude, playfulness, perspective, equanimity, empathy, accountability.

What are your core values? Share them with us on our website and on our Facebook page.

In friendship and collaboration,
Rebecca and Gioia

Art Directive
Look at our list of values-which ones are most intrinsic to you and what you believe in? Make a collage of people who embody those characteristics and place yourself among them. Post your image her and on our Facebook page!

Reducing Stress! Free Workshop, Thurs, July 2, 2015, 12-1:30 PM Main Library, Tucson, AZ

Reducing Stress! Free Workshop, Thurs, July 2, 2015, 12-1:30 PM Main Library, Tucson, AZ
Reducing Stress: How to Feel Happier and Increase Well-Being
Reduce your stress and feel more peace! Workshop designed for people experiencing high stress, low energy, and/or burnout. Attendees will walk away with concrete strategies for creating immediate and lasting positive changes in their personal and professional lives.

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Who: Rebecca Wilkinson, MA, ATR-BC, LCPAT of Creative Wellbeing Workshops
What: Lecture Reducing Stress: How to Feel Happier and Increase Well-Being
Where: Joel Valdez Main Library, 101 North Stone Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85701, Children’s Meeting Room
When: Thursday, July 2, 2015, 12:00-1:30 PM
Registration: Contact: Rebecca@CreativeWellbeingWorkshops.com, call 520 2383 4200 or just show up!
Cost: Free and open to the public

Presented by Rebecca Wilkinson, MA, ATR-BC, LCPAT, a Licensed, Registered and Board Certified Art Therapist with over 20 years of clinical experience working with clients in acute distress in psychiatric hospitals and with patients struggling with life-threatening illness. She serves as a Wellness Counselor and Specialist at Miraval Resorts. She teaches at the George Washington University Graduate Art Therapy Program and is core faculty with the Smith Center for Healing and the Arts for people affected by cancer in Washington, DC. She is founder of Creative Wellbeing Workshops which provides training on preventing burnout and improving personal and professional wellbeing. She maintains a small private practice seeing clients who are looking to feel better and experience more satisfaction in their lives.