14 September 2009

Sandbox therapy

I learned how to do a play therapy technique called "Sandbox" a few days ago at work. The therapist I work with lets me come to group sessions sometimes and listen in. This time we had a boy that usually dosent attend group because he is a little too restless/reactive. However, today the therapist did a Sandbox. Heres how it works:

The method is versatile, but always includes a few key elements. The members of the session are invited to take manipulatives (toys, drawing materials, objects) and arrange them according to how they feel or perceive about a situation or context. Then you discuss what is constructed and talk in terms of the manipulative.

Two of the boys got a hold of the fireman/police figurines and a white board. Before just a few minutes they had drawn an elaborate depiction of "how they felt the group was doing in general": this included a picture of a giant house on fire with two firemen putting it out, one fireman running away with a lunch box, and the last one using his fire ax to kill innocent bystanders. After a few moments of guided introspection, the therapist magically got the boys to spill some of their deepest darkest anxieties by focusing on the "firemen" and how "the toys" each felt and dealt with the situation.

Quite the technique eh?

You have no idea. I actually got to practice it out in a discussion a few nights later with my roommate about his frustrations with current dating prospects. Before we knew it, a pile of socks and a cell phone were transformed into my homeboy on the possible paths to love that lie before him. Four days later he was on date #3 with a girl.

Yup. Chalk that one up in my 'random collection of skills and obscure training' list. Right underneath the "teaching Buddhist meditation techniques to 13 year olds" entry.

p.s. Tonight is Beatles Rock Band night at our house. We are competing with the premier of "The Office" so we will see who are true friends are...or at least which of our friends don't watch network television.

08 September 2009

sad day

Lets play a game. Its called "What's wrong with this picture?"

Let me point out some key elements:
  • Brian is sitting next to his car.
  • Brian is sad.
  • Brian's car has no CA license plates.
  • The car is filthy because it rains dust where he lives, for it is a desert filled with bad drivers that Brian constantly bad mouths and labels per their distinctive license plate of which he now shares a common trait.
Yeah. Synthesize all those observations and you can determine their relationship/connection with each other.

Alas, there is a silver lining to this tragic event.


Deep Thinking: Economy

I was at dinner with one of my chums tonight, and we got talking about what makes a great economy. I'm not econ major, but I'm getting to being a decent consumer so I guess that makes my whimsical thoughts at least worth blogging. Here is what I got. I'd love some constructive input or cool POV's on the subject. Its messy and scattered, but is fun to write.

  • A good economy serves the needs and wants of its consumers.
  • It is in someone's best interest to serve others interests.
  • A person-person relationship is a highly desired function of consumerism
  • Individuality and variety are also desired traits
  • Most consumers are self-aware of their needs and wants
Elements of an Effective Efficient Economy:

  • Low concentration of large quantity suppliers and high concentration of small specialized experts with networked access to producers

Lets get one thing straight, places like Wal-Mart have their place. When there are basic goods that everyone needs access to, and we already know how to make them very well (e.g. like making papers plates, napkins, nails, or door hinges), we should have a place where these type of things are available to the masses in great supply and cheap cost. HOWEVER, for most goods this is not helpful to local business, individual identity/culture, or innovative progress. What this looks like in an ideal economy is a giant hardware store with tons of practical goods. Home Depot has got this down fairly well. Its basically a general supply store with tons of options and basic goods.

In an ideal economy there would be these type of stores. However, for most specialty goods (including clothes, most food, entertainment, rare goods) there would need to be a different way of obtaining them. The secret to satisfying the specific needs of the consumers is to have high instance of specialized experts in the production/distributing sector. When I have a specific need, it dosent make any sense for me to become an expert in everything I buy, albeit interesting and fun at times. The fact of the matter, is that I need to spend less time thinking about consuming and less time consuming so I have more time to do other stuff, (like producing my own cool services).

Solution: I go to the expert who I can detail my request and get feedback on what my options are and introduce me to the proper variety of available goods and services. I then make an informed choice, and then proceed. For choices I make repeatedly, I slowly become the expert as I become more educated about the options and provide this service to others.
  • Prolific access to information/communication
  • Super-streamlined and efficient shipping system

(i might still work on this one a little)