by Lauren Fallat, LPC LPAT ATR-BC
If you are looking for a way to improve your mental health, consider combining meditation with art therapy. Both meditation and art can be powerful ways to connect to your center. When we connect to our center, we are connecting to our deepest selves, and we can access our intuition and our inner wisdom. In this blog post we will explore further the benefits of mindfulness-based art therapy as well as ways to incorporate these ideas into an art process.
There are many benefits to combining meditation with art therapy. For instance, both practices can help you to remain grounded in the here and now. This is important, as it can help to reduce stress and anxiety. Additionally, both practices can help you to connect with your inner emotions and feelings, which can be helpful in order to better understand yourself and to work through any issues that you may be experiencing. Finally, both meditation and art therapy can help you to express yourself. Often, people find it difficult to express their emotions and feelings. However, through art therapy, you can create artwork that allows you to express yourself in a way that is safe and comfortable for you.
One of the ways that art therapy incorporates meditation is by providing a space for people to connect with their emotions and inner thoughts through the use of art. In addition, art therapy can help people to learn to be more present in the moment, and to focus on the here and now. This can be done by asking people to create art in a way that is expressive and reflective of how they are feeling in the moment.
There are many ways to incorporate meditation into art making and art therapy. Some ways are:
1. Sitting in silence and focusing on the breath for a few minutes before beginning to create. As you breathe in, you might imagine taking in positive energy, and as you breathe out, you might imagine releasing any negative energy.
2. Focusing on your creative center. As you breathe in, you might imagine taking in creative energy, and as you breathe out, you might imagine releasing any negative energy.
3. Creating with eyes closed.
4. Repeating a mantra or positive affirmation while creating. A mantra is a word or phrase that you repeat to yourself as you meditate. You can choose a mantra that resonates with you, or you can use a mantra that has been traditionally used in meditation. Some examples of mantras include “ohm,” “peace,” “love,” and “let go.” As you repeat the mantra, you might focus on the sound of the words, or you might focus on the meaning of the words.
5. Playing calming music in the background while creating.
6. Focusing on the intention for your artwork. As you breathe in, you might imagine taking in the intention, and as you breathe out, you might imagine releasing any distractions.
7. Drawing or painting from nature.
8. Focusing on the process of art making, rather than the final outcome.
9. Including symbols or images that represent peace and serenity in your artwork.
10. Use visualization in your art process. As you visualize, you might focus on a specific image, or you might focus on a feeling or emotion. You can also focus on the outcome of your artwork. As you visualize, you might imagine the finished product, and you might feel the emotions that you will experience when you see the artwork. You can also use visualization to connect with your intuition. As you visualize, you might allow yourself to be open to any messages or images that come to you.
11. Meditating on the artwork you have created once it is finished. Another way that meditation is used in art therapy is by providing a space for people to reflect on their artwork after it is finished. This can be done by sitting in silence and focusing on the artwork, and by contemplating the different emotions and thoughts that were experienced while creating it. In this way, art therapy can help people to gain a deeper understanding of themselves, and can be a powerful tool for self-exploration.
12. Focus on the present moment. As you breathe in, you might imagine taking in the present moment, and as you breathe out, you might imagine releasing any worries or concerns.
Find a practice that you can stick with, and allow yourself to grow and deepen your connection to your center.
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