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Expressive Freedom and The Power of Choice in Art Therapy

by Lauren Fallat, LPC LPAT ATR-BC

In life, we are often faced with difficult choices. Some choices seem small, but can have a big impact down the road. Other times, the choice is more significant, and can mean the difference between success and failure. When we think about our lives, we think about the choices we've made. Big or small, our choices have shaped who we are.

Too often we go through life on autopilot, reacting rather than choosing. We let our circumstances dictate our emotions and our responses. We fall into the trap of believing that we don’t have a choice, that we are powerless to change our lives. We always have a choice. We can choose to be happy or unhappy, positive or negative, hopeful or despairing. We can choose to see the best in people or the worst. We can choose to focus on our problems or on our solutions.

Choice allows us to be creative, and to find new solutions to the problems we face. It allows us to find fulfillment in our lives, and to achieve our dreams. Without choice, we are limited in what we can do, and how we can live our lives. We can choose what to think, what to feel, and how to respond. In this way, our lives are like works of art- each choice we make leaves a unique mark on the canvas.

In art therapy, we use this idea as a way to explore our lives and the choices we've made. Often, people will create art that reflects the choices they have made in their lives. We create art to express what we're feeling, and to explore the different paths that are available to us. This can be a powerful exercise, giving us a new perspective on our lives and the choices we've made.

When we engage in any creative act, we are making a choice. We choose what to create, how to create it, and what to do with the finished product. In an art therapy session, there are a variety of media to work with, different possibilities for interpretations of images or themes, and variability in the pacing and direction of the session- all of which require choices. This simple act of choice can be incredibly empowering, especially when it comes to our mental health.

Creating art can be a way of gaining a deeper understanding of who we are and what we want from life. It can also be a way of coping with difficult emotions or experiences, and of managing difficult situations. As children, we use art to learn about our surroundings and experiment with new ideas and concepts. As we grow older, we continue to use art as a way to explore the power of choice.

When we look at our art, we can see not just the choices we've made, but also the consequences of those choices. We can see how our choices have led us to where we are now, and how they've affected our relationships and our sense of self. Through art, we can express what we want and what we fear. This can be helpful in making decisions when we feel stuck or when we don’t know what to do.

No matter what the choice may be, it’s important to remember that we always have a choice. We can choose to give up, or we can choose to keep going. We can choose to see the negative, or we can choose to see the positive. We can choose to listen to our fears, or we can choose to follow our dreams. Once we realize that we have control over our own lives, we can start making choices that will lead us to success and happiness.

Recognizing the importance of choice is the first step to making sure that we always have it. It's also important to remember that we always have a choice, even when it doesn't seem like it. We might not always like the choices we have, but they are still there. When we make a choice, we are deciding what we want to do or become.

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