The Power of Art as a Self-Healing Technique
Originality; Creativity; Therapeutic, Unique
Art; a totally unique process where you can immerse yourself into a creative and relaxing state, and express your thoughts and emotions in a visual way. Engaging in creating a piece of artwork (of any kind) fosters a sense of harmony and accomplishment, and is a healthy way of diverting all negative energies and emotions into something positive, creative, and therapeutic. In addition, what is produced at the end will be an original and unique piece created by you.
The powerful thing about art is that it can reflect your personality and state of mind, and is a therapeutic process to engage in. Where words fail, doing some painting, drawing, dancing, playing an instrument, doodling, writing, etc, can release toxic energies and lift your sense of well-being and contentment, highlighting the therapeutic elements of engaging in an artistic/creative process. In addition, art can help with communicating thoughts, ideas, and concepts when you struggle to find the words to express or communicate.
As an individual who regularly does art, and vigorously did acrylic painting as it provided healing for me when I had depression, I can testify the power of doing art as a form of self-healing. Being able to mix the colours, create abstract and experimental pieces, drawing upon my faith and interests for inspiration, helped me to regain my sense of self, provided more healing for me than what medication ever did, and I create pieces of artwork that I am truly proud of. My testimony simply proves the power of art as a healing technique, and that, despite facing adverse circumstances, overcame it, and aided my own recovery.
Doing art helps you to express your thoughts and feelings in a way that words cannot, and the end result is a heightened sense of self, creativity, and better frame of mind. 10-15 minutes of doodling before you go to sleep can help you to relax and improves the quality of your sleep.
Engaging in artistic activities stimulates the brain and stretches the imagination, enabling you to discover more of your own creative abilities and potential. The benefits of doing art include improved self-esteem, reduced stress, heightened creativity, a greater sense of awareness and self. Art does not judge, and is the perfect way of unleashing your imagination, unwinding, and is a tool for self-expression and healing. There are no rules or ways of doing ‘art’; it is solely down to the artist to use an instrument or tool of choice, and select a medium to create with.
Going back to the 1940s, the discipline of art therapy was recognised as an individual practice and profession . After World War 2, veterans were encouraged to do different types of art to help them cope with PTSD, and help improve their mental state after being at war. Art helps to create a "blank mindset," which helps to improve the symptoms of PTSD or other mental health issues, such as anxiety and depression, aiding the recovery process and boosting cognitive functions. The "blank mindset" concept simply refers to all thoughts and emotions being blocked out, whilst the focus and energy is put into creating something. This is where the healing takes place, as it can help create a sense of positivity, productivity, and enjoyment over the negative emotions and memories.
Go and try something today; pick up a pen, pencil, paintbrush; whatever you’re comfortable with and create something. Notice how you're feeling before you do some artwork, and see how you feel after. You will feel the lift in your mood. Art is a powerful tool for self-healing and expression.