Healing old wounds is essential for a sustained recovery. Restoration Recovery Centers believes art can lay the foundation for emotional growth and sustained recovery. The healing properties of art can give you a format for self-expression. Art can help you understand your thoughts and reprocess your memories. Whether creating art or engaging with it, art can improve your mood and help you manage your substance use and mental health symptoms.
Art’s Healing Properties
There are many healing benefits to creating or consuming art. Art can include anything that uses your creative processes, from painting to listening to music to going to an art museum. For art to be healing, it should be thought-provoking and emotional. It should allow you to project your emotions into a physical form – something you can see, hear, or feel. The mental health benefits of art can be numerous and include self-reflection, reducing mental health symptoms, creating connections, and altering thought patterns.
Analyzing or creating a piece of art can inspire an emotional connection prompting self-reflection. Self-reflection is an important recovery tool. It can help you better understand yourself, others, and the world around you. While it is possible to participate in self-reflection without the consumption or creation of art, art can help you dig deeper into your psyche. By creating an evocative environment, art can help you learn a lot about yourself.
You might realize that you’re angry at someone you didn’t know you were angry at, grateful for something you didn’t know you were grateful for, or anything in between. Many forms of art are a self-reflection of the artist. This can make art comforting because you know you are not alone in the ways you feel.
Reducing Mental Health Symptoms
Different types of art can provide various effects on your mental health. The expressiveness that art affords you can help reduce symptoms of trauma, depression, and anxiety. Creating art can help you work through a traumatic memory or better understand your feelings. It can also serve as a release of distress or toxic emotions. By providing the opportunity to take your complicated emotions and create something physical, art can give you a sense of pride and accomplishment. Instead of fighting uncomfortable feelings in your head, you can point to your art and take pride in what you made.
Creating Connection and Alternative Thought Patterns
Artistic creations allow you to share meaning and find meaningfulness. Through the expression and consumption of art, you can find a deeper meaning or alternative perspective that could change your negative thought patterns. When art is shared among a community, you can learn about people’s various thought patterns as their art invites you into a corner of their minds. This can foster deep and meaningful connections and relationships. Having a better understanding of your pain and struggles will better equip your support group to be helpful to you in times of distress.
Using the Healing Properties of Art in Therapy
Some complementary therapy treatments use art in their approach to healing. Restoration Recovery Centers uses art in its treatment programs by providing art and music therapy. These therapies were created to be utilized simultaneously with traditional types of treatments such as psychotherapy. Since art encourages you to express your emotions, it can make it easier for clients to form trusting connections with mental health professionals.
Healing Properties of Art Therapy
In art therapy, various art media are used as the primary mode of self-expression and communication. The intent of art therapy is not for artistic critique or to improve upon your art skills. In fact, the mental health professional conducting art therapy may not have masterful artistic skills. Their job is to encourage you to be comfortable with self-expression and to use that self-expression to encourage emotional growth.
Healing Properties of Music Therapy
Music therapy is one of the most accessible and well-researched forms of art therapy. According to the National Library of Medicine, music has been proven to soothe stress, decrease mental health symptoms, and restore emotional balance. A music therapy session can include listening to music, writing lyrics, playing instruments, singing, or even dancing. It’s about understanding thoughts and feelings better through song and movement.
Can the Healing Properties of Art Help You Heal?
Like any type of treatment option, you need to try different types of art therapy treatment before you understand the effects it will have on your mental health. There are many different ways you can incorporate art into your recovery. Being able to express yourself can help you process your emotions. If you don’t enjoy painting, try expressing yourself through dance, journaling, or photography. You might be surprised by what you learn by practicing various forms of self-expression.
Participating in artistic activities through art therapy can help you better understand your thoughts and emotions. Art can also help you connect and form meaningful relationships with your peers. Restoration Recovery Centers offers several different types of treatment that can help you better express your emotions. Our mental health professionals will work closely with you to help you better understand and manage your thoughts and feelings. We value getting to know each of our clients and all of their emotional complexities. If you or someone you know is struggling with substance use disorder, call us at (888) 290-0925 to learn how Restoration Recovery Centers can help you restore your life’s purpose and heal from addiction.