James Franco Gets Arm Stuck Under Mini-Fridge, Relives Trauma
On last night’s episode of The Daily Show, James Franco freaked out after surreptitiously getting his arm stuck under a mini-fridge. As he is a hunky movie star and mini-fridges are pretty dainty, I don’t believe Mr. Franco was in any real danger. But his scared howling, however disingenuous, reminded me of an often undervalued therapeutic technique: role playing.
Role playing was first developed by Viennese psychologist Jacob Moreno, who believed people healed faster by acting out their traumas than by talking about them. Traditionally, the patient would act as protagonist in the reenactment and the therapist would act as director.
Role playing can heal scars from hellish traumatic events like cutting your own arm off or from the little traumas of everyday life. Try it yourself! If you get caught in a freak rainstorm, go home and take a freezing, fully-clothed shower. If you get in a car accident, throw yourself onto the nearest parked car like a grenade of glorious healing!
Reenactment therapy is also great for healing childhood traumas. If you’re still sad that you got a “D” on a math test in the 6th grade, you and your therapist can act out the trauma by making the letter “D” with your bodies, like this...
However you choose to incorporate role playing into your self-improvement regimen, I believe you’ll always find it therapeutic and theatrical!