Art Therapy and Self Expression Go Hand In Hand - Class Is In Session
Art Work – Self Expression - Therapeutic Connection
As a young child I loved to draw, color, paint and even use sidewalk chalk. My mind would wander into a whole new world of make believe. I was in control as I held an artistic object in my hand as bursts of colors splashed through my mind, then I would create!
What a great way to express yourself! As children it is an adventure every single time; taking us away to our own special place. A place of serine bliss.
When we grow older many of us loose that sense of wonder, and put limitations on ourselves because of life, circumstance or lack of confidence. Many put this useful tool on the shelf forgetting the wonder connected to this simple magic.
Art is actually an expression of oneself, and to be able to transfer those feelings and thoughts onto paper/canvas is truly an amazing feeling. You do not have to be a fabulous artist to accomplish this task.
All you need to do is let your mind wander for a bit and draw what you see in the mind’s eye. Ohhh, I know you are saying to yourself, “I cannot draw and there is not an artistic bone in my body!”, but that is not the case. We all have this ability. It may be simple, or it may be extraordinary, but it is all art expression.
There is a big connection to art and therapy because sometimes when you cannot physically get the words out of your mouth, you may be able to express them on paper.
For Example: You are angry, sad, traumatized. You are in this silent world of pain. The words refuse to flow from your lips, but someone hands you a piece of paper with black, blue, white and yellow crayons and they say to you, “Here draw a simple picture of how you are feeling right in this moment.” What does one do? First your mind will instantly connect with the colors of your emotions. In this case the black and blue. Then either scribble the colors on the paper slowly or erratically depending on the mood, or you may write one or two words in these colors and then cross them out over and over again until you feel a release!
This is one example of how art and therapy can connect, because after doing this a few times you may be able to go to the next step. You may want to verbalize what you were feeling when you drew this picture.
Also, you are in control! When someone has been traumatized or abused they have lost control, and this is a positive way to regain that self-control back and feel empowered once again.
Healing comes in steps, and art therapy is a great way to learn how to connect to your inner feelings and thoughts, so you can get them out without saying a word. The words may come later, but until you get there, this is a great outlet to find some peace and balance.
If you do not feel comfortable with drawing freely on a blank sheet of paper, start out with a coloring book. Focus your mind on the picture you are working on and connect your feelings with the image. You may want to graduate to free flowing once you feel more comfortable.
Whatever you ultimately decide to do, incorporate art expression into your life, and allow your inner child to come out and play once in a while. You may be amazed at what your “inner child” may teach you!
Embrace the Journey and God Bless,