How do you feel
when you read a novel…sing a song…paint something…or play a musical instrument?
Do you work out your mind too while dancing?
Does it make you happy to attend a good concert, a play, a movie or an exhibition?
There definitely is a connection!
Art in any form, whether while creating or observing, reduces the stress hormone called cortisol. It also releases the feel-good hormones called endorphins which help you combat stress and pain. By letting you enjoy a sense of fulfillment, it transforms you into a more positive, well-rounded human being.
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It increases dopamine that leads to positive sensations in us. It improves the connectivity between memory, self-monitoring, and introspection. It maximizes our power to focus and betters our problem-solving abilities. By enhancing the health of your mind and body, also delays aging.
Art can be created by anyone who is creative. That said there is no one in this world that is not creative. If you haven’t created any form of art till now, it only means you haven’t tried doing it. That leaves us with one question – if anyone can create art, why can’t everyone be an artist?
It is not that artists are lucky enough to be able to enjoy the ability to paint or write. In fact it is not about luck; it is about hard work – the number of hours they put into their art. They are not just creative; they are hard-wired for creativity. They have honed themselves to their craft. You can do it too; you have to try.
Creating art is an absolutely rewarding feeling. You are giving life to something from within yourself… something original that you can share with the world… something that has a pure intrinsic value.
The word ‘Art’ is associated with many misconceptions. There are a few that may think you need to create sculptures and paintings to be considered a real artist. And then there are others who think art is a talent; you are either born with it or not. A few more are of the opinion that they cannot benefit from art since they are not good at it. There may be some more who may feel only an art therapist can help you enjoy the therapeutic benefits of art.
Art could be anything…cooking…writing…photography…gardening…comedy… Art is what you make of it. It has no constraints. The definition is wide open. You don’t have to worry about which art form to pursue. Anything that comes naturally to you… vibes with your personality… is right for you.
While you spend those hours alone with your creativity, engaged in your creative task, you will find your mindset and your thoughts in a state of complete freedom, away from anxiety, negativity and stress. You experience a flow that cannot be expressed in words. Once you are into it, it keeps going. Art is never complete. It takes you deep into your personal development.
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When you deeply engage yourself into art, your mind starts churning out new ideas, thoughts and imagery, all in a positive way. No vitamin or mental supplement can do what art can do to you. Creating your own art is the ultimate mental boost you can ever experience in life.
Once a professional musician wondered, “If art contributes so much to my psychological well-being, why is my life so screwed up?” Then in his thought, he removed music from his life. When he did that he realized that his life would be even more screwed, had there been no music. He would have missed that one thing that has brought so much happiness into his life.
The happiness that art brings need not be the greatest happiness in everybody’s life. However, the fact can’t be ignored that for a great many people, art has been a tremendous source of happiness.
The creative expression that you pursue through your art gives incredible meaning to your life. It helps you conquer your internal negativity, gives a boost to your self-esteem, and leads to personal growth.
It is a common belief that creativity is linked to madness. Many eminent artists like Vincent Van Gogh, Ludwig Van Beethoven and David Foster Wallace have experienced many problems that have led them towards mental and emotional instability. Scientists are still to establish the connection between creativity and madness. Whether mental illness contributes to art or not, art definitely contributes to mental health.
All of us have an innate desire within us to express ourselves. Art only provides a medium for such expression, by offering a wide range of activities that are beyond imagination. Not only does such expression benefit our mental and physical health, it makes us happier and healthier as individuals.
By expressing ourselves through tangible ways, we get an opportunity to share something with the world. With one click of a mouse we can share our art with not just thousands, but millions of people.
The physical and mental benefits of such an expression are innumerable. Yet, we end up spending most of our time watching television and engaging ourselves with social media. The entire day is spent consuming information and responding to all those inputs that end up bombarding our lives.It is only through art that we can find a release from all that.
So take some time off and ignore those incoming signals. Create your own outgoing signal. Produce something. Find a way to express yourself. Don’t just consume; contribute any way you can.
You don’t have to make a living out of your art. Instead, focus on expressing yourself. Explore new ideas. Figure out different ways of completing a task. There are no rules to follow; you can create your own style. It is not about choosing colors, textures or lines; it is about expressing your feelings in a way that touches others.
It is more about the process of creating rather than the creation itself. Whatever be the process of creating art – painting, writing, singing, or dancing – it will definitely do good to you.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How does art make you healthier?
Participating actively in any art form helps your mind to relax, connect with yourself and clear the mind. Mind is free when you know how to deal with uncertainties, challenges and stress. Connecting with your inner self and letting it liberate with your expression. Thus, art is a form of expression that can make you happier.
2. What art means to you and how art can make you feel?
The fascination for some, passion for others, art can have different interpretations. Some people dedicate their lives to art, while some look at it as a hobby or a pastime. The more you know it, connect with it, the more you fall in love with it. This is something that you can only know with experience.
3. How does art improve your mood?
Secretion of happy hormones and reduction of stress hormones; is the key to a happy mood. Art lets you hack this balance of hormones. The reduction of stress hormones such as cortisol and increase in the level of endorphins makes you feel relieved from stress and pain.
4. What is happiness in art?
Happiness is knowing that you have found something that makes you feel content. Be it the magical nodes of music or the mesmerizing colour strokes on the canvas; there are many things that can evoke your emotions. All it takes you to find is the art that you connect with.
5. How does art affect mental health?
Mental health and wellbeing is an integral part of living a healthy & happier life. Art helps you to take a break and clear your mind. We are bombarded with information every moment we turn towards our gadgets. Engaging in art activities can boost morale and can make us feel confident, energetic and happy, thus boosting mental health.