How Can Creating Art Reduce Stress?
When you are experiencing a lot of stress of feeling anxious, it seems like nothing can help you relax. You can’t focus on reading a book. You don’t feel good when you go out with your friends. You don’t have enough will to exercise and so on. It seems that anything you do bothers you in some way. However, there are still some things you can do to reduce stress, such as creating art. Even if you’ve never considered yourself an artist, it’s never too late, and you should definitely try it. Holding a brush or a pencil is not hard, and getting some art materials is also not expensive. Since it’s not a big investment and it’s rather easy, you have nothing to lose and actually a lot to gain. Art will award you intellectually, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. As Pablo Picasso once said, “Art washes from the soul the dust of everyday life.”
Benefits of Being Creative and Making Art
When you are experiencing a lot of stress, expressing complex emotions through art such as joy, sadness, trauma, fear, and similar can help you heal and simply allow you to look at things from a different perspective. Creating art is healing not only for the mind and spirit but also for the body, and it can help you not only to relax but also to rejuvenate and increase your energy and enthusiasm for life.
Art works great as a form of anti-stress therapy because it’s a meditative practice that puts you in a comfortable, focused and thoughtful state. Creating art can help you take your mind off of daily struggles and issues and simply make you mindful of the present moment. Making art allows you to play, explore and experiment, while also stimulating new brain synapses.
When you are feeling anxious, it’s very hard to identify your fears and feelings. Art can help you articulate your emotions and present them visually. When engaging in artistic pursuits, it’s like you are engaging with and being in a relationship with yourself, helping you to know yourself better. Making art is a complex process that actually opens channels of communication beyond verbal communication, allowing us to see ourselves more fully and clearly. Due to this, we are able to connect on a deeper level and to each other.
Things You Can Do Now to Start Relieving Stress
If you want to relieve stress through art, here are some simple ideas to get started. Once you start exploring your creative energies, you will quickly come up with new ideas and simply grow as an artist. All you need to do for success is not a good technique or drawing skills, but only honesty and openness to yourself. However, if you struggle to start and need some inspiration, we recommend visiting a local fine art gallery to contemplate some beautiful artwork.
Playing and Experimenting with Color
If you don’t like drawing, simply skip this part and start experimenting with color. You can also tear different pictures from a magazine, glue them down, and combine them with color in a beautiful collage or mix-media piece. You don’t have to think much about it, just follow your heart and emotions. Concentrating on the colors will give you something to focus on other than the stresses you are currently experiencing.
Create a Visual Gratitude Journal
When we are experiencing a lot of stress, remembering the things we are grateful for can help us go through some difficulties in our life. So, you can create a gratitude journal. It can consist of photographs and drawings, or anything else which you are grateful and that reminds you of the joys of living. A part of your gratitude journal can be a sketchbook or a simple visual journal where you will visually catch your daily life moments, and just give yourself an opportunity to observe the world around you with more alertness.
Paint or Draw Your Mood
How do you feel? Try to represent those feelings visually and give it some color. Every shape and color conveys energy and has a deeper meaning. What kind of energy do you have? What kind of shape, mark or color can express that energy? Allow yourself to unleash your emotions on a piece of paper and you will better immediately.
This is a very interesting type of meditative exercise. To practice blind contour drawing, you should slowly draw while looking at the object you are drawing and not looking on the piece of paper. This exercise has the power to slow down time and really help you see the uniqueness of the thing you are drawing. After drawing the object, you can freely color it. If this is too much for you, and you would rather do something simple, you can always get an adult coloring book.