Art therapy is a recognized mental health profession and a unique branch of psychotherapy that uses the creative process of making art to improve physical, mental, and emotional well-being. There has been more than 40 years of research done in this field and it is practiced all over the world in a variety of different health care settings.
Art therapy can help you with:
- Expressing your feelings
- Coping with trauma/traumatic events from the past
- Chronic pain and physical illness
- Relationship issues
- Eating disorders
- Feeling “stuck”
How it works:
Art can help you express feelings.
Making art forces you to get out of your “all-knowing”, otherwise called rationale mind and more into your body, automatically connecting you to your feeling/intuitive being. Working with and from the body, you will learn how to translate your feelings and sensations using art materials. Art gives you permission to express yourself freely. Let’s face it, sometimes words and intellect can limit you and can’t fully capture the depth of what is really going on, and sometimes there can be comfort in the fact that an image can literally contain a thousand words.
Art allows you to see your problems in another way.
Making art makes it easier for you to literally “see” what is going on inside, to look at your problems in a new way, outside of you. You might be amazed to discover how much more clarity, insight, and possibility you gain from having a bit of distance and perspective.
Making art builds self-esteem.
Making art means learning new skills, which builds confidence. It takes a lot of courage to try something new, and it is my experience that people often feel very rewarded when they create meaningful art during a therapy session. You are learning a new language, and immersing yourself in a visual metaphoric landscape that widens your horizons, thereby encouraging you to expand the way you see your world.
This is my favourite part about art therapy. Often when you are fixated on a problem or a particular way of being, it is easy to forget the importance of play. Life is dynamic, and problems arise when things become too stuck. The secret to initiating change is allowing for movement. Making art allows you to move colours on a page, to move your body in the process, and it allows you to have fun and play without any pressure to perform. Making art allows you to delight in the moment and in what you are experiencing. When you are playful you are also connected to the spirited child within you, that is joyful, spontaneous, and inherently happy.
All these things are pretty amazing, aren’t they?
One more thing…
Making art creates a record of your process.
What is beautiful about art therapy is that you have a visual record of your whole therapeutic process. All your art-work is stored in a secure cabinet during your therapy process, and when we finish working together, we do a review of everything you have made. You will be amazed at what you see!