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Balance in Music Therapy Sessions

Posted Sep 26 2012 2:00pm

It seems that there is a quest for balance being fought each and every day. I constantly hear from parents trying to squeeze one more thing into their schedule, and I see myself often doing the same- trying to fit in one more client, schedule myself to write one more blog post, remember to call the insurance companies one more time.

The past two months have been a blur. In between the continuous process of trying to master insurance reimbursement, the addition of new clients, and figuring out how best to manage my new role as a manager as opposed to just being little old me, I don’t know that I have had much time to think about anything else.

In between all of that not thinking, I found myself thinking about balance as it applies in our music therapy sessions. As the therapist, I’m constantly performing a balancing act: I am paying attention to the music I am making, how my client is responding, if I need to change something about the music, if my client is achieving the purpose of the activity, how I can change the activity so that they will, what I am going to do next, and more.

I never really gave this balancing act a tremendous amount of thought–it was just part of the job–until a year or so ago, I was asked by a music therapy student how I was able to not get lost in the music that I was making. My answer then and now was that I am so focused on my client, that the music is automatic until I have a reason to attend to it.

One of my dear friends and colleagues, Kat Fulton , has often shared her idea that the pursuit of balance is just one more thing to balance. I’ve seen it discussed quite thoroughly in regards to maintaining balance in our personal and professional lives, but I’m very curious to hear thoughts about balance within the therapy session.

So leave a comment! Achieving balance in therapy sessions. Does it happen naturally for you? Do you have to give it a lot of thought? Do you think that trying to achieve balance is important?

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