self-care

Why The Act of Creating Art Feels So Darn Good 

So Halloween is just around the corner. I am so obsessed with this holiday.  Dressing up is so fun for me. I love the opportunity to be creative and come up with unique costume ideas. Last year, I finally embraced the idea of a couple’s costume and we dressed as a cookie monster and a cookie jar. Everyone loved it so this year I knew I had to one up myself. We decided to go as a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I’m sure my boyfriend assumed we would just make it out of cardboard. But I decided to go all out and create giant stuffed slices of bread so we could be a 3-D sandwich. I’ve never done this before but I decided to hand sew it. I didn’t know if it would turn out like I had it in my head, but actually it was better than I imagined.

The act of creating these handmade sculptural objects was so much fun and so therapeutic, for so many reasons.

Working towards a goal and taking small steps together makes you feel productive and accomplished. You are producing rather than consuming. Depression makes a person feel hopeless and causes a lack of interest, so having the energy to do such an active activity is so fulfilling. It stimulates your brain and helps you feel energized. It also helps you work out your brain cells, because it requires you to challenge yourself and think in new ways. You need to solve problems as you work.

Also, the repetitive nature of sewing requires a level of concentration that takes you out of your head, since you need to focus on the tactile. This can totally apply to other art forms too.  This also lowers your stress levels and helps calm you down (good for someone with anxiety!) It’s kind of like meditating. You need to focus on your environment instead of your thoughts. 

Creating art also allows you to express yourself and your identity. It boosts your self-esteem and makes you feel proud of yourself, increasing your confidence. It offers an outlet to share your story, ideas and opinions. You are also doing so in a non-verbal manner, focusing on the emotional and visual instead. This can ultimately lead to greater self-awareness.

If you are worried you don’t have the artistic talent to create art, don’t despair! I truly believe anyone can create art. It might not look the same as someone with formal training, but it can still be beautiful because it is a part of you. Just choose the medium that’s right for you: painting, drawing, pastels, charcoal, guitar, the written word, wood, metal, knitting, piano, sewing, even cooking – the opportunities are endless!

5 comments on “Why The Act of Creating Art Feels So Darn Good 

  1. I love how creating art helps me with my stress and anxiety, but for me when had really bad depression, it was hard to create anything. Now that I am doing better, I am able to create again and it feels really good to be able to get things done. Thanks for sharing your perspective.

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  2. spudbudette

    I knew creating is therapeutic but I never thought about why. So thank you for confirming and explaining. And the peanut butter and jelly sandwich is a cool idea. Enjoy:)

    Like

  3. Makes me think of this Mr Rogers episode: http://i.imgur.com/4jq38pt.jpg

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