What’s New In Synergetic Play Therapy?

  • We’re thrilled to announce that Synergetic Play Therapy retreats as part of the Certification Program now take place in three countries: Canada, Australia, and the USA! We host in Vancouver, Melbourne, and Boulder, Colorado.
  • SPT is going back to school! After years of demand from schools districts around the country and Canada, we are finally ready to launch a comprehensive training program dedicated to teachers, school counselors, and educators based on the principles of Synergetic Play Therapy! This is tentatively scheduled to begin in Fall 2018.
  • Are you interested in hosting a Six-Day Synergetic Play Therapy Intensive? If you are a SPT supervisor , let us know as we are in the process of creating the opportunity for Intensives to happen in new locations!   We’re hoping to launch this in 2019!
  • Lisa’s new book will be released in Oct 2019! You can preorder Aggression in Play Therapy: A Neurobiological Approach for Integrating Intensity here!
  • Starting in the fall, the Synergetic Play Therapy Certification Program will have a new format. Instead of a 3-hour webinar once a month, we will have 2 1.5-hour LIVE webinars twice a month. These will be conducted online only and occur on Wednesday evenings from 5:00-6:30 p.m. (MST).
Existing Research & How You Can Continue the Work

One of the best ways that we can grow and legitimize SPT is through research, and many types of research at that. The vast majority of research comes out of University of North Texas where Dr. Sue C. Bratton, a professor in Counseling and Director of the Center for Play Therapy at the University of North Texas, recently won the 2016 lifetime achievement award. UNT is leading the charge at compiling research in the field to help make play therapy a more credible model of therapy. This is no easy task as there are many criteria that make research credible. She and her team are in the process of creating a website that will showcase and allow us to search for specific research. Stay tuned as this alone is exciting.

As for SPT research, Megan Joelle, a therapist in the Introduction to SPT class, has agreed to lead the charge at organizing the research efforts for SPT. She is in the process of looking through research grants, so that we can begin to attract funding for larger projects and to hire a PhD research analyst who can compile the data we collect.

Research also doesn’t have to happen on a grand scale. The field is really looking for all kinds of publications. Any article submitted to a magazine or journal with “Synergetic Play Therapy” as the topic supports the establishment of SPT in the field.

Here is how you can help:

  1. Write an article about some aspect of SPT and get it published
  2. Write a case study and get it published
  3. Interview me and turn it into a paper and get it published
  4. Volunteer to help with data collection
  5. Volunteer to be a part of the research team where we put our heads together to design projects

We currently have one project that is part way done–Anastasia Imig (2014 Certification Program student) interviewed a handful of SPT therapists about their experiences with compassion fatigue. The information has been compiled and themes have been identified.

We are looking for assistance in finishing this amazing project, as it will be a true gift to the field to learn about how compassion fatigue can be prevented. We specifically need help looking through the themes again and helping compile resources so that we can write the paper. If you are interested, we would include your name on the published report.

If you have ideas for research, want to be a part of the research team, have creative ways or contacts to seek our funding, have a relationship with a University that might want to take on a research project, etc, please jump in and help our research take off.

Not only is recertification affordable, but you can now do it with our Online Introduction to Synergetic Play Therapy course!  Next course starts in February.
Please note that the class content of the Intro is required every three years, but not the consultation portion.  The cost is only $200 for you (instead of $900). Now that is a bargain!
Are you interested in supervising your own play therapists, supervising an SPT Intensive Training, or becoming a consultant for our 6-month Online Introduction to Synergetic Play Therapy course?  If so, download the SPT Supervisor Application Requirements for more details.

*Applications for these programs are mandatory

There are simple ways to market yourself without shelling out a lot of cash. And some of these include:

Use social media: These days, the easiest and most affordable way to advertise is through social media. If you don’t already have a presence, get one (and, no, Friendster doesn’t count). Post content (either your own or someone else’s) that engages people and gives them something useful. Content that’s shareable – research that’s groundbreaking or a list of solutions to a common problem – is most ideal.

Offer a discounted consultation: Once again, from the top: the most important aspect of therapy is the relationship between the therapist and the client. It is that relationship that heals. But to cultivate a relationship, there must be the potential for a connection. Not every therapist will gel with every client. That’s where a discounted consultation helps. Offer an initial meeting to see if you and your potential patient are a good fit.  But make sure you don’t give too much away discounted, because you are worth it!

Remember that you’re a brand: It may be funny to think of yourself as a brand, picturing your face sewn on the back pocket of a pair of designer jeans. But you are a brand and promoting yourself as such will attract clients. An essential element of this is finding your niche – what is your specialty? Someone known as the “best play therapist in the city” will draw more attention than someone known as “a therapist who gives therapy or something.”

Be responsive!: When you get busy, it’s hard to respond to every phone call and email inquiry, but strive to. Even if you have a full caseload, it might not stay full for long – therapy is a revolving door with people coming and going at will. So, keep potential clients on deck in the event space opens up for them.

Cross-promote: Cross-promotion is a type of promotion that benefits both parties involved – you advertise for them and they advertise for you. It can be a highly effective form of promotion as long as you cross-promote with the right type of business. Partnering with a yoga studio or daycare (if you’re a play therapist) will likely warrant you more interested clients than partnering with something that doesn’t make much sense…..like an accountant.

Hire outside help: Marketing is one of those things that’s always put on the backburner: talking to clients, not tweeting to strangers, is your priority. Yet marketing is still a necessity – to come to you, people must know about you. If you don’t have time to give marketing some sort of TLC, put an SOS out to an external source and consider hiring a marketing company to do the work for you.

Remember the basics: As helpful as the internet is to our lives, sometimes going back to basics works too. You don’t need to get archaic – advertising by carrier pigeon probably won’t work – but consider the effectiveness of word of mouth. A referral program, where you offer discounts to clients who refer others, is specifically useful in this regard.

Join Us For The 2019 SPT Membership Webinars:

(And if you can’t make it, make sure to watch the recording on the archived webinars!)

Please note: Starting May 2019, the webinars are switching to Tuesdays and some webinars will be pre-recorded and posted due to Lisa’s travel schedule

January-  Take the month to catch up on archived webinars

February 11th at 10 am: When parents have different values than the child and the therapist

March 4th at 11 am: Working with Cutting and Suicidal Ideation

April 15th at 11 am: Managing Roles and Boundaries with Blended Families

May 14th at 10 am: Understanding Addictions

Recording Posted on June 18th:  Play a Larger Game in Life- Owning Traits of the Greats

July 23rd at 10 am: Gifted Kids

Recording Posted on August 13th : Understanding Grief and Loss

Sept 10th at 10 am:  OCD and Perfectionism

Oct 15th at 10 am: SPT and Adults

Nov 5th at 10 am:  Exploring the Physics behind SPT 

Dec 10th at 10 am:  TBA!


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