Psychodrama is a transpersonal method developed by Jacob L. Moreno, M.D. that uses group dynamics to encourage emotional healing. In psychodrama, participants role-play scenarios from the past, present, or future to gain deeper understanding of their own emotions, beliefs, role, and choices within that particular scenario. These scenes are led by a “director”, which can be either the group facilitator or another participant in the group. Psychodrama is not group therapy, but rather individual therapy in a group setting, and the facilitator leads that therapeutic process with the support and in-put of the group.
Other participants in the group may volunteer or be asked to stand-in for characters in the protagonist’s scene, which often has the effect of an “aha moment” for the extras in the scene and the audience members as they relate the situations and breakthroughs to their own lives.
The purpose of this modality is to have an embodied experience of an inner struggle, belief system, or troubled relationship. Participants simultaneously deepen and distance themselves from their own stories to find unexpected ways of solving their problems and returning to wholeness. Another positive side effect of psychodrama is that those who participate in the groups often feel very emotionally bonded by the end of the workshop experience.