Hey Beautiful people,
In my previous job, I was a College and Career Coach for high school students and one of the amazing careers that would pop up was to be an Art Therapist. I thought this was a great career for people who loved to help people cope and also having a passion for art. As I talked students through this career to help them understand it based on their strengths and interests, I two things crossed my mind, “I would love to do this as a career” and “There is so much healing in art.”
What is Art Therapy
Art therapy is a mental health profession in which clients, facilitated by the art therapist, use art media, the creative process, and the resulting artwork to explore their feelings, reconcile emotional conflicts, foster self-awareness, manage behavior and addictions, develop social skills, improve reality orientation, reduce anxiety, and increase self-esteem. A goal in art therapy is to improve or restore a client’s functioning and his or her sense of personal well-being. Art therapy practice requires knowledge of visual art (drawing, painting, sculpture, and other art forms) and the creative process, as well as of human development, psychological, and counseling theories and techniques. (American Art Therapy Association)
Although, therapy is a word people tend to shy away from, just know that we involve ourselves in therapy on a daily basis and most of the time it is unintentional. You know your key things that help soothe you when you are stressed. Some of those things are positive and some of them can be negative. Positive things would be meditation, praying, tea, music, writing etc. Some of the “negative” depending on your views could be drugs, alcohol, and other things.
When it comes to more positive therapy options, you think about paying people to help diagnose you and guide you through issues. Well I am here to tell you there are many ways to practice art therapy without having to hire a therapist. Although, they may have a lot more resources and techniques, there are some of us that like to do it on our own terms.
DIY Art Therapy Tips:
- Create a space in your home- your sanctuary where you go to that specific place for peace, reflection, and connection. The entire home can scream chaos, children’s toys all over the place, work that you brought home, dirty dishes piled up, whatever it may be, you need to a space that cuts all of that out so that you can focus.
- Carve out time– Whether 5-10 minutes a day or 2 days a week, dedicate a time for your own personal art therapy time. Maybe right before bed to help relax you so that you can sleep better. Maybe it is right before work or having to cook breakfast.
- Find things that you enjoy- My personal Art Therapy session is writing and DIY weekends. I look on Pinterest projects to do or try to recreate someone else’s art. It could be having a playlist as you dance
- Be intentional– Anybody can color or play music but really digging into your thoughts and your feelings. You can focus on a series of statements or create according to your feelings and mood. Many of you create Vision Boards, that is a form of Art Therapy. This site lists many ways to be intentional with your art therapy sessions. Some ideas include:
- Keep track of all that you do– Ever look at your past journals and think, oh my gosh I have come a long way. Well you want to be sure to keep track of your progress however that may look like.
Why You Should Embrace Art Therapy:
- Relieves trauma– we experience trauma everyday whether we are aware or not.
- Reduces stress– we all know that stress is a major culprit to many diseases and we need to be well.
- Stimulates personal growth– Cathy Malchiodi wrote in her book, The Art Therapy Sourcebook, ” They may discover insights about themselves, increase their sense of well-being, enrich their daily lives through creative expression, or experience personal transformation.”
Ideas for Art Therapy in the Real World
You may not have the space or the ideas to be able to create but there are things you can do that is readily available for you, here are some ideas.
If you are in the Dallas-Fort Worth Area, Buzzed Art Nite is a great option. It is a paint and sip party happening all the time. I participated in one of the events and I had the best experience. I literally, let Tanasha, the owner know that this is healing for me. A chance to create or recreate is very therapeutic. The atmosphere is so dope. Amazing music playing in the background and people around you supporting and encouraging you.
Going around and capturing things that are beautiful to you. I remember my loctician gave his toddlers cameras and told them to go and take pictures of things that are beautiful. Then he had a conversation with them to see why they thought it was beautiful. Art therapy is not just for adults. It definitely is great for people of all ages and abilities.
Dance classes are great as well! Your body is a work of art and the music is art as well. Take the time out to get in sync with your body no matter if you have rhythm or not.
What are some ways that you incorporate art into your everyday life? Did you know it was a form of healing for you? What are some things that you want to start incorporating into your life as far as expression in art form?
Thanks for reading!!! Be sure to share, subscribe and comment below.
Peace and Blessings,
*Sponsored post, but all opinions are my own and written by Cicely Carr (BougieBlackBlogger) and parts that are not are noted.