The therapy of art

The therapy of art

Hello there! So you might be a bit surprised to get a blog from me today. After all, I did say that on the last blog (for those who have been reading) that I will do one blog a month, with a measure blog, due to study and new work demands and constraints. I will stick to this, but as I’m on my train to university today (written on a Tuesday on the train) I had a few minutes to reflect and thought I would write a bit.

It’s been a bit of a difficult week. I have been faced with a few challenging patients and have been very much out of my comfort zone. I have had the immeasurable support of my partner, and I am so grateful for her listening ear and strength. I have been talking to her, but I have also been trying to distract myself with art.

Now I would like to say that I have been doing real art with paints and brushes, but alas, I have been engaged in the art that comes with technology. It’s still a form of art I see it. Just with less mess and less clean up. I have using a free app called Happy Color (US spelling). I am in no way affiliated to them, just so you know. I am just mentioning them as I have been using their app over the difficult time and have found it a helpful distraction, and a rewarding distraction as well after seeing my artistic efforts come to fruition.

Here is an example of a picture I did.

Which got me thinking about the benefits of art and how it can help the mind.

According to The British Association of Art Therapists (2020), art therapy is “a form of psychotherapy that uses art media as its primary mode of expression and communication. Within this context, art is not used as diagnostic tool but as a medium to address emotional issues which may be confusing and distressing.”

The benefits of art therapy Elevation Behavioral Health (2020), the benefits of art therapy include improving self-management, alleviating symptoms of depression, and reducing stress. For further information on other benefits, please have a look at the link below:

9 Benefits of Art Therapy

I can definitely attest to the fact that doing art, apart from being a distraction, has been a good form of de-stressing, if only even for a short period of time.

There are other forms of art in which you can partake, if painting, physically or digitally, is not your thing. You can play music, sing, or find another creative outlet that helps you to use your imagination and creative part of your brain, and to give your number crunching logical part of your brain time to relax.

In summary, art therapy is a form of psychotherapy which uses art media as a form of expression and communication. Art also acts as way to help us alleviate depression and stress. If art is not your thing, you can explore other avenues of creative outlets, such as singing or playing musical instruments. Or even listening to music if you have clumsy fingers like myself .

Before I go, one last bit of news. Just a reminder that I will feature on ElasticFM this Monday 17th February. I will speaking with Elaine Godley from Perfect Health, and I am looking forward to sharing the podcast with all of you later on in the week. Link below for the site.

https://www.facebook.com/elasticfmfanpage/

I hope you have found the blog of some help. Remember: it’s a journey. It will take time. Have patience in the process. You will get there. Until then, stay happy, stay healthy, and have a lovely weekend wherever you are on the planet.

And remember: love yourself. 

References:

Elevation Behavioral Health. (2020). 9 Benefits of Art Therapy . Available: https://elevationbehavioralhealth.com/9-benefits-art-therapy/. Last accessed 11th February 2020.

The British Association of Art Therapists . (2019). What is art therapy? . Available: https://www.baat.org/About-Art-Therapy. Last accessed 11th February 2020.

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A bit about the author:

I am a guy who is (nearly) 40, who is sharing a journey of weight management and wellbeing.I am also a mental health professional with a wealth of years of experience in supporting individuals who have challenging mental illnesses and personality disorders. 

Prior to my current professional role, I spent several years supporting members of the community as a fitness professional, assisting individuals with weight loss and health improvement programmes.

I completed a PGDip in Mental Health Nursing in 2013, and an MSc in Advanced Practice in 2016 in which I looked at improving nurses’ level of engagement with patients with challenging personality disorders. 

In 2018 I successfully undertook a Clinical reasoning in Physical Assessments course with the view to start studying toward becoming an Advanced Nurse Practitioner in late 2019.

In 2015 I also undertook a Mentorship for practice (BSc Hons) course and have been supporting future nurses with their training and development. I have also recently supported a Healthcare Assistant Staff toward training in and successfully passing and achieving a Foundation Degree in Mental Health Nursing.

In my current role I am a person looking to support the physical and mental health and wellbeing of the individual. As part of my role within the health services in supporting individuals with mental health care needs, I am also currently looking to develop myself as a Wellness Coach, to support the individual with weekly wellness blogs, with the view to support individuals on a 1:1 basis as well as holding motivational lectures and seminars.

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