The science is in … immersing yourself in creative pursuits is good for your overall well-being. Studies suggest the benefits include a decrease in depressive symptoms, increase in positive emotions and reduction in stress responses.
Creative wellness is something that many have likely intuited for a lot of years as beneficial and are now validated through the many creative pursuits on offer to support this dimension such as the adult colouring phenomenon! While colouring is a popular approach, creativity and wellness is so much more than this one activity. A full spectrum of the arts — music, visual arts, dance and writing — whether through participation or engagement has many beneficial wellness outcomes.
This dimension has the potential to get overlooked through the busy-ness of life. Creative wellness is often seen as a leisure activity that many don’t find the time for, so the moral to this story is … it’s time to make time.
Creative wellness has its roots in the work of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi*, a Hungarian born psychologist renowned for the concept of ‘flow.’ According to Csikszentmihalyi, flow is a highly focused mental state that many experience when completely absorbed in activities that involve creative ability.
Think about how you feel when you are totally absorbed in your favourite music, book, writing, painting or any creative pursuit that you choose to engage in.
Cziksentmihalyi defines flow as “a state in which people are so involved in an activity that nothing else seems to matter; the experience is so enjoyable that people will continue to do it even at great cost, for the sheer sake of doing it.”
So … go make or do something, because it’s really good for your wellness.
Read about my mosaic project for more on the benefits of creative wellness … I’m totally hooked!
*pronounced Mee-high Cheek-sent-me-high