Financial Express; Healing Touch: Activities That Lead To Inner Ease And Freedom From Sticky Thought

Headspace, our applied improvisation for mental health program in collaboration with Oddbird Theatre & Foundation was featured on the Financial Express by Indrani Bose, along with a list of other arts-based approaches to destigmatizing the conversation around mental health in India.

Here is a short excerpt from the piece:

Varoon P Anand, the facilitator of the second session of Headspace, monthly improv sessions at OddBird Theatre & Foundation in The Dhan Mill Compound, Chhatarpur, tried to pull most of the 20-odd participants, primarily in their 20s and 30s, out of their shell without hijacking their experiences.


OddBird Theatre is a collaborative art centre, organising a variety of art and dance performances. Improv is a string of spontaneous events that might prove to be therapeutic to the participants — thanks to the humour born or created out of the situation. Sahana Arun Kumar and Mojo, who were some of the participants at Anand’s workshop, derived humour from a given situation through gestures and play-acting, but not belittling anyone there. Kumar, a psychotherapist, describes how the improv workshop organised by Anand helped her overcome the need to have a sense of control. “As therapists, we have a lot of responsibility on our shoulders. I do struggle with a sense of control and so I liked the fact that there is a space like this where I could go out of control.” Anand begins his sessions on a positive note — participants are asked to make eye contact for 20 seconds, compliment each other and make sounds like a chicken together… he ensured that no one felt embarrassed to make a ‘fool’ of themselves by making everyone get out of their comfort zones at the same time.

Read the full article on the Financial Express website here.

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