Art in itself is very therapeutic; therefore, it comes as no surprise that art therapy is a popular form of mental health treatment. Engaging the creative side of your brain on a regular basis will help you relax and may even benefit your health.
What is Art Therapy?
What is art therapy? It’s an established form of mental health treatment that’s been in practice since the 1930s. With art therapy, patients use “art media, the creative process, and the resulting artwork” to explore their feelings and their problems. The use of art helps the therapists assess the problems that the patient faces. Therapists may also use art as a form of treatment for their patients as well. Art therapy is commonly used for children who are transitioning to a new location, children who have a bleak outlook on the future, and the elderly.
Art Therapy Benefits
Art therapy can benefit your overall health. In fact, according to experts, art therapy can be used to promote self-awareness, improve self-esteem, manage behavioral problems, help with addictions, and reduce anxiety and stress.
Would you like to gain some of these art therapy health benefits? Consider the Mindful art therapy ideas listed below.
- Explore your options. There are numerous art activities and projects for you to choose from for art therapy. Scrapbooks, clay sculptures, photography, finger-painting, and vision boards are some common examples. Other great craft ideas to consider include heart map drawings, collages, papier-mâché projects, and DIY mini Zen gardens. When choosing an activity consider going beyond your comfort zone by trying something new. You never know what you will discover about yourself in the process.
- Set aside resources for your art. Using art to benefit your health requires resources. You’ll need to set aside some funds for the necessary art supplies like paper, paints, pens, brushes, glue, clay, etc… You’ll also need to set aside a small amount of space in your home for your projects. Art is messy and that’s a good thing. It helps you truly explore your feelings and let go of all of your frustrations. So be sure that you conduct your art in an area of your home where you will not mind the mess. Lastly, you’ll also need to set aside time for your art projects on a regular basis in order to truly reap the health benefits.
- Seek out a professional. If you seek professional art therapy guidance consider the American Art Therapists Association’s website. They have resources that will help you find a local qualified art therapist.