Art can be a source of inspiration and comfort during challenging times, and this is why millions of people all over the world have started drawing, painting, or learning a musical instrument as a way to cope with the Covid-19 crisis. But even before the pandemic, people have been turning to artistic endeavors as a way to heal, and studies have shown that engaging in art activities can actually benefit your life in many ways. Creating and appreciating art can be good for the body, mind, and soul, and here are all the ways art can make you happier and healthier.
It can relieve stress
Everyone will experience stress at some point in their life, and currently, over one-third of all Americans are living with extreme stress. Feeling constantly stressed can result in physical and mental health problems, relationship issues, and poor productivity at work, which is why finding positive ways to cope with it should always be a priority. Meditation and exercise can relieve stress, but drawing, painting, coloring, or sculpting can also help to ease tension and calm the mind.
According to a Drexel University study, just 45 minutes of making art can significantly lower stress levels, making you feel more relaxed and less anxious. If it’s been a while since you’ve made art, start simple. You can try coloring in an adult coloring book, or sketch hairstyles such as wavy tresses on cartoon or anime characters. Don’t worry about making it perfect — the important thing is to actively engage in the creative process so that you can experience the full stress relieving benefits of art.
It can reduce depression and anxiety
Those who are experiencing depression or anxiety may want try doing mindful art activities as these can help to enhance mental health. A study published in The Journal of Korean Medical Science shows that individuals who participated in a 45-minute weekly mindful art therapy session for 12 weeks had reduced levels of anxiety, depression, and anger. To relieve anxiety and depression, try mindful art activities such as drawing a self portrait, or make a collage made out of print outs or magazine clippings. You may also want to draw mandalas and color them in afterwards, or create some sand art. Any of these can help you practice mindfulness so you can achieve inner peace.
It can boost self esteem
Doing something creative can improve your self confidence as it gives you a sense of accomplishment. Whether it’s composing a song, completing a cross stitch project, or capturing a moment with your camera, the feeling of accomplishment comes from the process of doing the activity, no matter what the end result is. Pick an artistic activity that you enjoy doing so you’re more likely to stay engaged, and don’t forget to focus on the process so you can feel good about your art and yourself.
Art can benefit your life and relationships in so many ways. Try doing something creative today and see how it makes you happier and healthier, and don’t hesitate to try different art activities until you find the one that suits you best.
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