Mental Health

20 Trauma Therapy Activities to Aid in Your Recovery – Unlock Your Healing Power

trauma activities for adults

If you’re struggling to get rid of Trauma, know that you’re not alone! Trauma is a life-altering experience that can have a lengthy recovery period. But the good news for you is that therapy games for adults and activities are available to help individuals deal with the effects of trauma and promote healing and growth. These activities can vary from person to person, as everyone has their own unique experiences and coping mechanisms.

According to the data from National Council, about 70% of adults in the US, which is around 223.4 million people, have experienced a traumatic event at least once in their lives.

In this guide, you’ll get a detailed explanation of what trauma is and how to deal with it, including trauma therapy activities that you can try on your own.

What is Trauma?

Trauma is a universal problem that occurs when someone experiences a distressing or life-threatening event or series of events. It can cause severe and long-lasting harm to a person’s mind, body, relationships, feelings, and sense of purpose.

Usually, everyday stressors like minor illnesses or injuries, regular life changes, disappointments, and failures are not looking as traumatic because they are not severe or permanent. Trauma is not about a particular event itself but how you personally respond to an event that overwhelms your ability to cope. It’s a unique and individualized reaction to an experience that feels too much to handle.

The most common trauma symptoms are having bad dreams, developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), having intrusive thoughts or memories that keep coming back, avoiding certain places or situations, feeling anxious or sad, having trouble sleeping or focusing, and experiencing different physical and emotional reactions.

Practical Trauma Group Therapy Activities for Adults

Here are several activities that can assist you in dealing with the trauma and supporting your healing process. So, without delay, let’s look at adult trauma activities!

Self-Soothing

When we experience trauma, our bodies and minds can become overwhelmed with stress and anxiety. Self-soothing techniques can help us to calm down, relax, and feel more grounded. Some standard self-soothing strategies include deep breathing exercises, meditation, muscle relaxation, and visualization.

By practicing these techniques regularly, you can learn to deal with your worry and anxiety more effectively and begin to heal from the effects of trauma. You must remember that self-soothing is not a substitute for professional therapy or treatment, but it can be a powerful tool to use in conjunction with other healing methods.

Be Present

Make a deliberate effort to bring open, accepting, and discerning attention to everything you do throughout your day. Whether eating a meal, talking to a friend, or even doing chores, approach each activity with curiosity and presence.

Notice the details, the textures, the flavors, and the sensations that arise. By practicing this level of attentive awareness, you can fully engage with the present moment and cultivate a deeper appreciation for life’s little joys.

Clay Sculpting

Clay sculpting is rarely using trauma group therapy activities for adults. Using clay, create three-dimensional sculptures that represent your feelings and emotions. Shape and mold the clay with your hands, allowing yourself to engage in a tactile and physical experience.

Think about the different forms, textures, and emerging shapes as you work with the clay. Allow your hands to guide you in expressing your innermost thoughts and emotions through the sculpture. Don’t worry about creating something perfect or exact; this is a personal and expressive process.

Collage-Making

Gather magazines, newspapers, photographs, and other materials that catch your interest. Cut out images, words, and phrases that resonate with or relate to your emotions and experiences. Arrange these cut-outs on a paper or poster board to create a collage.

Consider how the images and words make you feel as you create your collage. They can portray your feelings and experiences visually. Let your intuition guide you in selecting and arranging the materials. The process allows you to explore and express your inner thoughts and feelings creatively and tangibly.

Expressive Arts

When it comes to trauma activities for adults, expressive arts activities provide a creative and non-verbal way to process and release blocked emotional responses to trauma. These activities can include various art forms, such as painting, drawing, clay modeling, photography, music, and movement.

Engaging in these expressive arts allows individuals to tap into their inner emotions, thoughts, and experiences that may be difficult to express verbally. Through the use of colors, shapes, textures, sounds, and movements, individuals can explore and externalize their feelings related to the trauma they have experienced.

Nature Therapy

Nature therapy is one of the activities for trauma therapy that uses nature intentionally to help you feel better and cope with trauma. As a result, it allows you to connect with your bodies and emotions in a safe and comforting environment. Nature therapy can help you heal from trauma and prevent it from happening again. Being in nature has many benefits for your well-being and can help you recover from difficult experiences.

Psychoeducation

Psychoeducation in a group setting involves teaching members about trauma, including what it is, how it affects the body and mind, and common reactions to it. This knowledge can make people feel less isolated and more knowledgeable about their own experiences. So, isn’t it one of the best trauma therapy activities for adults?

Group Outings

Group outings are a way to practice social skills and connect with others outside of therapy. These outings can involve visiting places like museums, parks, or other community activities.

It’s important to remember that a trained therapist should always lead trauma group therapy. They provide a secure and supportive environment for group members and can offer appropriate help or interventions when needed.

Support Groups

Regarding trauma group activities, support groups offer a safe and supportive environment where people who have experienced similar traumas can come together. People in these groups can share their feelings, experiences, and challenges with others who are also in the struggling phase. Support groups provide an opportunity for understanding, empathy, and shared healing.

Mindfulness

Mindfulness is about paying attention and being aware of your thoughts, feelings, and the world around you. With the help of this, you’ll become kinder to yourself and focus less on negative thoughts.

Mindfulness requires practice and patience, so begin with a few minutes each day and slowly increase the time you spend practicing it.

Writing Exercises

Writing about your thoughts, feelings, and experiences connected to the trauma can be a beneficial way to handle and understand difficult emotions.

Keeping a diary, writing letters to yourself or others, and composing poetry or stories are all writing exercises that are useful in trauma therapy. These trauma therapy activities for adults help you express yourself and make sense of your emotions in a helpful and healing way.

Self-Compassion Exercises

Self-compassion exercises help you develop a kind and caring attitude toward yourself. You can try writing a kind letter to yourself, doing things that make you feel good, or using phrases like “I will be kind to myself” or “I accept myself as I am.” These exercises will assist you treat yourself with understanding and gentleness.

Body Scan

Lie down and pay attention to each part of your body, beginning with your toes and moving up to your head. As you concentrate on each body part, you clearly notice any physical sensations or tension. The more activities for trauma therapy you do, the more quickly you’ll recover from your stressful thoughts.

Journaling

Writing in a journal is a reliable method to work through trauma-related thoughts and feelings. You can try writing freely without any restrictions, jotting down specific traumatic events or memories, or reflecting on how trauma has affected your life. You can express and process your experiences personally and meaningfully.

Walking Meditation

Pay attention to the feeling of your feet touching the ground. Notice the pressure and sensation as each foot touches the floor or earth. Become aware of the movements of your body as you walk or move.

Focus on the shifting of weight, the bending and stretching of joints, and the rhythm of your steps. Concentrating on these sensations can bring you into the present moment and enhance your body awareness.

Role-Playing

As we are talking about trauma group activities, if you want to practice communicating and setting boundaries effectively, role-playing is a helpful method. In role-playing, group members can act out situations where they practice asserting their boundaries or dealing with things that trigger them. With this activity, they can learn more and improve their skills in a safe and supportive environment.

Yoga

People believe that yoga is a powerful tool for dealing with trauma. The physical postures and breathing exercises assist in releasing tension and stress from the body, while the meditation and mindfulness practices can help to quiet the mind and soothe the nervous system. By cultivating a deeper sense of awareness and connection to the present moment, yoga can help individuals to process and release difficult emotions related to past trauma.

Engaging in a Relaxing Hobby

Like others, you’re also interested in working on your favorite hobbies for sure. Engaging in hobbies like painting, drawing, knitting, or gardening can have a calming effect and help reduce stress. These activities provide a soothing and enjoyable way to relax and unwind.

Mind-Body Practices

Trauma activities for adults like yoga, tai chi, or qigong help connect our minds and body. They can be helpful in therapy to manage feelings of stress, depression, and other mental health problems. These mind-body exercises promote a balanced and harmonious state of being.

Gratitude Practice

Take a few minutes daily to write down or think about what makes you grateful. No matter whether it’s like a sunny day, a delicious meal, or spending time with loved ones. Reflecting on these things can help you develop a sense of appreciation and contentment in your life.

Advantages of Trauma Therapy Activities

Trauma therapy activities for adults offer many benefits for individuals who are suffering from trauma. Once you see the pros of therapy activities, you’ll get more motivated to start working on them. So, have a look at the following benefits:

  • Emotional Processing: Trauma therapy activities provide a safe and supportive space to process and express complex emotions associated with traumatic experiences. Engaging in these activities can help individuals better understand their feelings and work towards healing.
  • Empowerment: Participating in stress therapy activities empowers individuals to actively engage in their healing journey. These activities promote self-expression, reflection, and growth; individuals can regain a sense of control and agency over their lives.
  • Coping Skills: You can get coping skills and techniques that apply beyond therapy sessions. Individuals can learn and practice healthy ways to manage stress, regulate emotions, and navigate triggering situations.
  • Creative Outlet: Many trauma therapy activities involve creative outlets such as art, music, or writing. These outlets provide alternative channels for self-expression, allowing individuals to communicate and process their experiences in unique and personalized ways.
  • Self-Reflection and Insight: These actions encourage self-reflection, introspection, and gaining insight into one’s own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. The increased self-awareness can contribute to personal growth and a deeper understanding of the effects of trauma.
  • Building Resilience: Working on trauma therapy activities can help individuals build resilience by learning adaptive coping strategies and developing a stronger sense of self. These actions promote skills and qualities that can support individuals in overcoming adversity and moving forward in their lives.

In Short!

We all go through difficult times, such as losing someone we love, getting sick or hurt, facing natural disasters, or seeing others suffer. Suppose you notice that group members find it challenging to handle their distress, set boundaries, or care for themselves. In that case, you can adjust the group activities to address these concerns. By doing so, you can become wiser, more understanding, and stronger as a person.

Moreover, play therapy games as a form of treatment as they are for all ages. The range of activities available, from creative outlets to structured techniques, allows individuals to find an approach that suits their needs and preferences.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *