While some people may have creative careers, creativity is something everyone should strive for in some shape or form. Whether it’s through art, music or fashion, being creative can vastly improve our mental health and make us feel happier. Why? Because it gives us some time out of our stressful lives to focus on something different and develop a new skill. So, lets say you’ve come in from a stressful day at work and you need a release. What creative activities might lift your mood?
MINDFULNESS COLOURING & ACTIVITY/PUZZLE BOOKS
I used to poo-poo the idea of those adult colouring books for example as I thought that there wasn’t any point in doing something just for the sake of it but then I got into mindfulness colouring and really saw the benefit. Now I colour in regularly and even have Mrs Hinch’s Activity Journal to work through which has lots of activities such as colouring pages, Sudoku, word searches and puzzles. Being creative is fun and a great way to take your mind off other things that may be stressing you out; its all about finding something that you enjoy!
MAKING A COLLAGE
Collage making can be incredibly soothing. Using scissors and glue, it takes us back to childhood and allows us to throw whatever we want onto a page to express ourselves. Invest in some good stationary from somewhere like the Printer Inks Website and get your hands dirty. Find materials from magazines, newspapers, or online and piece something together that represents how you’re feeling, or that interests you. It doesn’t matter whether it looks rubbish or like a masterpiece, either way its ok because it feels great. Most artists aren’t appreciated in their time, anyway haha!
One of the best, most positive uses of a collage is in the form of a vision board. Stick down images of the things that you want to achieve in life and use it as an outlet to channel your focus. I’m a big believer in the law of attraction and what you put out into the world really does come back to you.
It’s time to banish the stereotype that knitting is only for the older woman and accept the fact that knitting can be awesome. Not only is the act of knitting extremely relaxing, as it requires you to be focused but once you get into the rhythm and practise regularly you might be able to start making your own clothes. It’ll could lift your mood to knit a scarf that enhances your look and that people compliment you on. However, if you’re not great at knitting, that’s OK too. The whole point is to relieve stress and focus your mind elsewhere, so if your scarf looks more like a few strands of wool then who cares?! My nana was awesome at knitting so I’d love to give it a go to see how well I’d do, perhaps its in my blood!
LEARNING AN INSTRUMENT
Creativity doesn’t always have to be about art. It can be about music, too. In fact, learning a new instrument is one of the most creative activities you could do and, whilst it won’t be easy, it can soothe your mind and distract you from any other tension. Plus, music can have a very calming effect on our bodies (although this may not ring true of your first few bars of Au clair de la lune on the recorder!). If you’re feeling worried or don’t know where to start, there are plenty of online tutorials for learning a new instrument, or you could sign up to a class. Either way, you’ll feel great when you start mastering your new craft.
Personally, I’d love to be able to learn how to sing or even act!
If art and music aren’t your thing, you can find creativity amongst the shrubbery in your own back garden, as gardening can be creative and soothing. Just like making a collage or knitting a scarf, you’re responsible for how something looks and you have no restrictions – apart from the British weather, of course. Whether you need to vent out some frustration and dig up some weeds or you’d like a new aesthetic border, gardening can bring out your creative side and provide a real sense of achievement. If you don’t have a garden you can always find an allotment nearby, or start growing some plants on a mini shelf in your living room.
Those are my suggestions, what are yours? Let me know in the comments!