Using creativity for wellness

As an art therapist for about 8 years and intern at the CBT clinic, creativity is a special topic of interest for me! I noticed when I stop having regular creative practice of some sort, I feel it in my body and I notice my mood is changing. Why is it so? Because creating a painting or a sculpture for example, involves the body and has a direct impact on our emotions!

There is a lot to learn about how creativity can be beneficial in our self-care practice. Here are some fun facts about it that are based on research :

1. Doing repetitive movement like drawing regulate your breath and heart beat
2. Doing 45 minutes of an art activity per week diminish significantly your stress
3. Looking at artworks can improve your mood
4. And.. you don’t have to be good at it to feel the benefits!

You surely have a lot of questions about what to do in the creative domain when you don’t see yourself as a creative person. Here are some creative instructions you can do at home that can help you integrate arts in your self-care practice:

Targeting your body

1. Draw your breath while being mindful about it for 5 minutes and notice the difference in your body
2. Calm your body with sensorial art materials such as clay or soft pastels used with your hands. Focus on the sensory property of the materials only.

Targeting your emotions

1. Make a feel good collage. Cut images that you like in a magazine and create a new image that feels good for you.
2. Choose one or more colors that represent your emotion of the day and create a small abstract drawing with those colors. You can also choose music that evokes your emotion and draw while listening to it.

Targeting your cognitions

1. Write down a positive word about yourself and embellish (colors, textures). For example, it can be something you would want to believe about yourself.
2. Create your own self-care tool box. Add every tool you have or reminders of these tools.

Wishing you creative wellness!