Creative Practice and Your Wellbeing

Among our busy schedules, many people recognize the necessity for self care. That is a time to practice whatever is best for your own well being outside of work or studies. In popular culture I have often seen self care portrayed as women lounging around in sweats with mugs of tea, flaunting their face masks. This is wonderful, yet I wonder if it is enough. True self care not only relaxes and rejuvenates the body, but restores the spirit.

A creative practice allows one to to fully and openly express themselves. This is crucial because self expression creates a place and energy where one feels completely comfortable with who they are. The practice may help express certain emotions. By finding a new way to express emotions one can begin to process and more through the positive and not so positive emotions. This in turn creates compassion. Compassion, first and foremost, for oneself, but also for others.  Creativity may take the form of drawing, writing, painting, dancing, paper crafts, clay molding, music, photography, yoga, makeup and many many more. That is the beauty of it; it is your craft and it can be and look however you want. For once, here is no such thing as perfection. And it is refreshing. To quote Frankie Bergstien, “I don’t need anyone but me to tell me I am an artist.”

In elementary schools we stress creativity through art class and music class. Giving children a creative outlet also helps brain development.  Yet we seem to forget this often as adults. I think it is part of what makes life seem dull sometimes. No one seems to have hobbies anymore. Our smartphones and other technology make it easy to fill our free time with distractions. We  need creativity now more than ever, to keep our spirits up and keep the inspiration flowing. A creative practice creates space for new perspective. It brings freshness and light to everyday life.

Consider building a creative hobby into your everyday or weekly schedule. Begin by looking for inspiration: go outside, observe the clouds, the tree bark, the people; go to a museum; dive into another culture. Even a coloring page counts as creative practice. Carve out even just a short amount of time to practice, but let yourself flow with the work. It may just be the key to holistic wellness.