Find out more about Integrative Arts Psychotherapy with Marybeth Haas HERE
On this page:
  • What is Integrative Arts Psychotherapy (IAP)?
  • detailed description
  • my personal approach
  • What is IAP helpful for?
  • Qualification
  • Fees
What is Integrative Arts Psychotherapy (IAP)?
In brief, IAP is a psychotherapeutic approach which actively encourages the client's imagination alongside talking to facilitate change and self understanding.
In more detail, we can look at each term separately:

'Psychotherapy' literally means 'to heal the psyche'. Some of the purposes of psychotherapy are: to facilitate the client's self awareness and exploration; to bring unconscious aspects of the client's psyche into consciousness because the more consciousness we have, the more choices become available to us in our behaviour and relationships. Additionally, clients are invited to explore alternative ways of relating to those learned in early life via the 'therapeutic relationship'. The therapeutic relationship is the professional relationship between client and therapist, experienced within clear boundaries and co-created between client and therapist. Because I have attended my own personal therapy throughout my four year training and beyond I have in depth experience of what it is like to be a client.


'Integrative' refers to the fact that I have studied a range of approaches to understanding human psychology, experience and behaviour. For example I have studied the work of Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung, Transactional Analysis (TA), Gestalt Therapy, Attachment Theory, existential psychology and neuroscience to name several. The purpose of an integrative training is for the therapist to gain an overarching understanding of the wide range of theoretical principles of how the human personality is formed and how the psyche functions. This understanding can then be applied to the specific needs of a client. This means there is no fixed way of working: the way of working is adjusted and co-negotiated with the client in psychotherapy. It also means that my theoretical application and understanding is continually developing.
in this context is an all encompassing term to include: imagination, creativity, metaphor and symbol. This means that in therapy sessions we can work with: mark-making media using pencils, pastels, pens, crayons; movement, clay, bodily sensation, music, sand tray and objects, etc. We can also work with dreams, story, fantasy and mental images. There are unlimited possibilities of ways to explore clients' experience. Simultaneously, I have NO expectations of clients doing anything specific. My clients always choose how they wish to work within the knowledge that I emphasize the important role of the imagination in psychological healing and the exploration of self.  
I use the 'arts' because it is scientifically proven that creativity is a right brain activity and therefore bypasses the logical mind which is so dominant in our way of life, which can be a source of much suffering. It is therefore possible to get more quickly to the unconscious material behind someone’s concerns or issues, by allowing communication with right brain via imagination and working in depth with that image. The 'image' can be a mental picture, a dream, a bodily sensation, a scribble, a drawing, a sand tray, etc.
My personal approach:

Each client will require a unique approach to his or her problems and reasons for coming to therapy. I am led by what the client brings as well as my own theoretical interests; the beauty of an integrative approach is that I can continually assess and deepen my awareness of the many ways of understanding humanness in a fluid way which keeps the client at the center of the therapeutic process.

The fundamentals of my practice involve being fully present, paying attention to the client’s process and using all of my senses as instruments to understand both what might be happening for the client and also within the dynamic being created between us. The use of creativity, imagination and metaphor, through actual use of the arts and/or through paying attention to how a client describes their experience in terms of symbols and metaphors are also important to my therapeutic practice.

I see part of my role as facilitating and empowering the client in their self awareness through the therapeutic relationship and creativity so that clients might experience their own choice process. I believe that by becoming aware of their process clients can then discover more choice within their lives.

My personal beliefs that influence all of this are that a person’s early experience will have a profound effect on their sense of self and on how they relate to others and the world as adults.  I also believe there is a natural tendency in all human beings to heal the self and to evolve towards greater awareness and well being; that all human beings have an innate creative capacity which is linked to our spiritual essence. For me this means that we each carry a spark of the divine or source energy and this spark is what makes us conscious humans; this idea is linked to concepts of soul which theorists like Carl Jung, James Hillman and Shaun McNiff all have written about. I believe if we can access our innate creativity through active use of symbol, metaphor, dream, image-making, then we can also have access to therapeutic affect. I have come to believe these things through my own psychological and spiritual journey over the last 25 years and my beliefs continue to evolve as I do, because I feel open to the unknowable and the mystery of life.
What is IAP helpful for?
Clients come for psychotherapy for any number of reasons including the following:
Anger •  Anxiety   Bereavement  Body image problems   Childhood trauma   Depression  
Low self-esteem   Parenting and family concerns   Personal relationship problems
  Sexual, physical or emotional abuse   Stress
In addition, sometimes clients simply wish to explore who they are more deeply, find more meaning and purpose in their lives, understand their own behaviour and relationship patterns, all without having any specific crisis to address.
  • MA Integrative Arts Psychotherapy from the Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education (IATE: for further info regarding this training visit 
  • Certificate in Child Psychotherapeutic Skills using the Arts from IATE. 
  • UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) accredited since 2014. 
  • I follow UKCP codes of ethics for professional practice. 
  • I have regular Clinical Supervision with a senior UKCP registered Integrative Arts Psychotherapist.
Sessions are usually weekly at an agreed regular time and are 50 minutes long. My fee is £50 per session.
Please get in touch for a NO OBLIGATION discussion of your needs and whether I may be able to help you. Please note I currently have limited email access and will respond to your enquiry as soon as I can.


all content  including images © Marybeth Haas 2010-2018