The use of story as a therapeutic tool to improve mental health
Arena Gielnik, Daniela
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The following paper explores the ways in which story can be utilized in the promotion of mental health. Story is a multi faceted concept, which can be adapted and delivered so as to give everyone access to its potential regardless of diversity or learning differences. The paper considers a number of story platforms that allow the counsellor to utilize story as a tool and that gives the necessary scope for diversity whether academic, cultural or social. As a therapeutic tool, it is clear that the use of story can cross cultural, gender, socio economic and age ranges and as such, is the perfect tool for counsellors to employ in the pursuit of improving the mental health of students in schools. In addition, the paper illustrates how by its very nature, therapeutic story can gain momentum without the direct contact of the counsellor, which accommodates the time constraints that often frustrate counsellors with limited to access to students in schools. Story is also a familiar and non-threatening concept to teachers and families, which can support the counsellor in terms of positive reinforcement in the classroom, at home and in the community. The paper champions the use of story as an effective therapeutic tool, which lends itself to the practicalities of the school counsellor’s role and the resources that they have available to them.