Have you ever wondered how your artistic tendencies affect your day to day life? Do you consider yourself artistic or think about exploring your creative side?
It looks like it could be well worth the effort for all of us, for a calmer and more mindful life according to research.
I am not traditionally “artistic” naturally, but it’s always been something that has interested me. I do consider myself relatively creative but as more of an “ideas person”. I really value this side of me, though it’s rarely explored.
Should we consider taking it a step further as we try to increase our mindful moments, through actual artwork? There seems to be a handful of mental health benefits shown through artistic expression.
Girija Kaimal, assistant professor of creative arts therapies at Drexel University, says mindful art can actually lower stress levels and research backs this up. Kaimal recently led a study examining the effects of making art on stress-related hormones in your body.
The results, published in Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association, titled “Reduction of Cortisol Levels and Participants’ Responses Following Art Making,” found that 45 minutes of creative activity significantly lessens stress in the body, regardless of artistic experience or talent.
This information is not news to the self-identified artists of the world, but we all should know that making art is actually good for the body, mind and soul.
This is a big deal, because most of us can do art of some kind. Whether it’s painting a picture, coloring in a coloring book, or writing a creative fiction story, we all have it in us to express ourselves in more creative ways.
Here are 5 quick tips for artistic expression that you can easily implement to enhance your mindfulness practice:
1 – Join a painting class and look for memberships where you can go on a regular basis. Or buy a painting kit for home for under $10*!
2 – Create your own birthday cards for friends and family using items around your house.
3 – Visit your local art museum for inspiration. Many are free and you can even find vouchers for parking.
4 – Learn to knit (a knitting book for beginners* can teach you everything you need to know) and create beautiful blankets, hats, gloves or heating pads for you and your loved ones.
5 – Use colored pencils for a daily habit of mindfully coloring in an adult coloring book to calm racing thoughts. Tons to choose from on Amazon.com*.
These quick ideas are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to expressing ourselves creatively in a mindful way.
Not only does creative expression through artwork reduce stress levels and increase overall productivity, but it will spur even more creativity in all areas of your life, plus it’s fun!
Let us know how you express your creative side for a more mindful life. Good luck and HAPPY MINDING!
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