Creative expressions help us to nourish physical and emotional well being by facilitating higher levels of alpha brain wave states which occur when we focus on a creative process. Alpha brain waves states are naturally calming and help us to process stressful emotions, which often have negative impact on health.
Often times, artists describe themselves as being in “the zone” when they fully immerse themselves into the creative process. Artist Naomi Hutchinson, has spent a lifetime creating intricate, needlepoint tapestries and handmade Japanese dolls, representing different Japanese historical eras, and wearable art that flows from using yarns and other textiles in creative ways. At age 80, she often describes the process of creating her art as meditation that not only calms the mind but also stimulates mental processes and activates fine motor skills through the delicate work.
Creative projects also encourage an integration of the use of our right and left brain hemispheres. It is the left brain that organizes how we approach a creative project and guides us to have structure around the materials and processes that we use. Yet, on the other hand, our right brain allows us to access symbolic language and abstract thought patterns to express many different facets of our experiences, thoughts, beliefs and emotions such that we learn deeply about ourselves, others and our world when we create art.
The next time you feel stuck on a physical, emotional or spiritual level, allow yourself to connect with your ability to be creative. You don’t have to be a trained artist to be artistic. Simply let go and try your hand at painting, coloring with markers, sculpting, creating collage, bending metal, or simply sketching with an ordinary pen or pencil. Let your hands flow and take you on a journey of simply expressing yourself — for the creative flow is quite liberating and can move you forward in new ways that can resonate through all areas of your life.