Why every single person needs a creative outlet

The importance of being creativeWhen was the last time you did something creative just for fun? With jam-packed days at the office and home, it can seem impossible to find time to paint, write or tackle a craft. But according to an American Journal of Public Health study, there’s a connection between those kinds of outlets and your mental and physical health.  Here are a few key benefits to taking time to explore something that interests you:

  • A break from anxiety and stress: A creative outlet can help fill a void in your life as well as distract you from stressful things like work. You’re focused on the thing you’re creating, not the mean comment your boss said to you yesterday.
  • A healthier body and mind: Research has found that doing something you enjoy can lower blood pressure, the stress hormone cortisol and body mass index. It can also reduce your negative thoughts and levels of depression.
  • Scheduled time for yourself: If you choose to take a class to get your creative juices flowing, you increase the chances that you’ll actually go as opposed to putting it off. You’ve already signed up and paid in advance, so you’re more likely to take the time for yourself – a great opportunity to reset your focus and mental state.
  • A chance to meet new people: Classes and workshops also offer an opportunity to get yourself up from behind a computer screen and meet new people with similar interests, boosting not only your creativity but your circle of friends.
  • A healthy outlet: Through art, many people are able to express feelings and experiences that they’re unable to put in to words. This is especially important when dealing with a tragic event or a stressful time in your life.

And don’t worry if you aren’t the next Monet! No matter your skill level, it’s important to schedule in some artistic time every week, whether it’s writing, dancing, singing or reading. What are you waiting for?

 

This blog post is part of #HealthyMe, a personalized web experience based on your health and wellness goals. To sign up today, visit http://www.ahealthiermichigan.org/healthyme.

 

Photo credit: Sarah

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