Art is an excellent way to improve your well-being, regardless of your artistic experience. It promotes self-expression, mindfulness, and the reduction of stress. Although all forms of art can be beneficial and promote peace and relaxation, it is important to find an activity that brings you joy and accommodates your lifestyle. Here are some examples of therapeutic art activities that you might like:
Drawing, sketching, or doodling
Doodling or drawing is a form of fidgeting that, when used mindfully, can aid in remaining focused when you are in a situation that requires your attention for a long time. Besides being soothing, it can help your memory and keep you alert while you focus on other tasks. Have you ever noticed yourself writing down phrases or drawing while on a long phone call? Many of us do this subconsciously to remain alert and on topic.
Making a collage is a useful way of expressing yourself when it is difficult to verbalize feelings and needs, and it can also be useful when visualizing the future and setting goals. Any materials can be used to create a collage, including: stickers, pictures, clothes, magazines, and any other materials you have on hand that can be glued to cardboard or a piece of paper. Making collages can be fun and therapeutic! It is appropriate for all ages and can be a group activity. Try making a collage to focus on your goals and notice what types of images, colors, and items you are most drawn to.
Molding clay and other similar materials can be a great tool to express your creativity while regulating your emotions. The texture and pliability of molding clay provide a fun and soothing activity that is beneficial in stress reduction as it can be squeezed to release frustration. Playing with moldable clay can also improve hand-eye coordination, promote joint movement, and improve motor skills.
Music is a unique art form. It can significantly improve your mood and promote relaxation, stress relief, and happiness. Can you remember a song that made you feel uplifted and optimistic when you were having a difficult day? How did that song change your mood? Was it the lyrics? Or maybe the beat? Music can be a powerful tool as it can alter your mood and has been associated with the release of dopamine. Specific songs can trigger a memory or an emotion and can even encourage a physical response such as singing along, dancing, or head bopping. Identify the type of music or song that helps you relax or feel happier and play it the next time you’re feeling down. Don’t be shy! Having a dance or karaoke session can do wonders.
Finding an enjoyable artistic activity can be physically and emotionally beneficial regardless of our skill level. It can be as simple as identifying an activity that makes us smile and using what we might already have around our home. Art is just another way of expressing oneself.