Ways to thrive in an uncertain world: Create your way through to positivity.

Today, more than ever, it seems there are valid reasons to worry. Some of them are the ever increasing costs in everyday life, insecurity in the workforce, security of the country, and the increasing crime rate. However, there are many situations when there’s no logical reason to worry, and it causes a significant amount of anxiety.

Why making art is the new meditation
Many of us have heard about the benefits of meditation, but sometimes find it hard to do.  Fewer of us know about the benefits of artistic expression. Creating art, however, is another way to access a meditative state of mind and brings about profound healing. Group meditation is a regular occurrence during our art workshops and often people don't realise they slip into this state on a frequent basis. We thought it would be helpful to spend a little more time explaining why art is so good for you and that checking yourself in to regular creative sessions is going to help you discover yourself and develop healthy routines in creative art & craft making. We have people attend from all walks of life, abilities, ages, and they have all made breakthroughs, if not with the first workshop then subsequent classes.
The French - American Artists, Louise Bourgeois once said, “Art is a guarantee to sanity,” (she died at age 98 in 2010!!!). She went on to add, “…This is the most important thing I have said.” For Bourgeois, — making art — was a tool for coping with overwhelming emotions. She remembers making small sculptures out of bread crumbs at the dinner table when she was a little girl – as a way of dealing with her dominating father. Art was more than an escape – it kept her sane!
Art therapy has a healing effect for a variety of ailments, including depression, trauma and illness, it is effective across age, gender or ethnicity. In a recent study of cancer patients, an art therapy intervention — in conjunction with conventional treatments like chemotherapy and radiation — not only diminished symptoms typically associated with cancer such as pain, fatigue and anxiety, but also enhanced life expectancy. The study, was based on the belief that “the creative process involved in the making of art is healing and life-enhancing. It is used to help patients, or their families, increase awareness of self, cope with symptoms, and adapt to stressful and traumatic experiences.”
Art is not only healing for individuals suffering from severe illness. Here are four reasons why creative activity is such a potent recipe for psychological well-being:

1. Art is a vehicle for meditation and self-connection

Most of us can understand that art provides an escape to a sometimes harsh reality, but where does art’s healing potential come from? It impacts the state of our minds: Enjoying emotional stability is largely about taking responsibility for how we feel. Research has shown the power of meditation and the science behind it. One of the reasons it is so powerful is that it encourages acceptance. Creating art is a form of meditation, an  active training of the mind that increases awareness and helps us accept feelings and thoughts without judgment and relaxation of body and mind to a state of 'Mindfulness' .
Art, like meditation, allows us to create space between our negative, anxious thoughts and connect with our true selves – as opposed to fleeting or false sense of identity we sometimes have when we are caught up in our thoughts and emotions. Creating art focusses the mind to reach a state of consciousness, a mindfulness and breaking free from the constant chatter of the mind.

2. Art provides a feeling of flow and freedom

Similarly to meditation, art can help us tap into a deeper and more quiet part of ourselves. We enter into a state of flow and present-moment awareness. Artists experience that creative activity has the potential to tap into a space of true consciousness of being, void of interpretation. In this space, there can be a sense of having no physical parameters; no body, or form to separate one from the other

3. Art allows for true self-expression

The process of making art overrides the need for verbal communication. Creativity is its own language and enables humans to connect with one another — and themselves — on a non-verbal level. In therapy it can be an effective way of saying the unspeakable as is shown through the use of creative therapies with children. This also explains how we can be moved to the core when looking at a work of art, or even listening to music, without necessarily knowing the specifics about its origin. Art exists within its own non-verbal parameter and thus frees us up for self-expression.

4. Art helps us become steady and centred

Practicing art regularly will help you create healthy thoughts and experience mindfulness. Happiness may be less a matter of experiencing sharp highs (often followed by deep lows), and more a matter of nurturing a space that provides stability and a constant connection to our true selves.

Conclusion:You cannot run from the future, but you can give your best to create a positive future right here and now.

We have people attend from all walks of life, all abilities, ages and they have all made breakthroughs, if not with the first workshop then subsequent classes. If you are a complete beginner, sometimes you need room for a little patience and perseverance but after years of experience we have the ability to guide you there.