Love shouldn’t hurt – ever

Creative Expression is Important
Everyone feels stress. As a culture, we hear about the need to handle our stress every day. Our doctors tell us, our teachers tell us, our friends, coworkers, and TV commercials tell us. So how do we manage it? How do you destress when you are under the pressures of daily life? One of the best ways to relax is through creative expression.

Working with your hands has been shown to be calming and stress relieving. Joining a creative group forms a sense of community. And working on a creative project leads to feelings of accomplishment. When life seems like it’s out of control and we feel like we aren’t really good at anything, it is amazing to watch a project come to life in our hands and when we complete the project, we feel an immense sense of satisfaction that makes us happier, which leads to better health too.

Creative expression is important for everyone. It is especially helpful for those who have been traumatized. For survivors of any trauma, creating art allows for a healthy outlet to relieve both physical and emotional stress, allowing survivors to relax their bodies and minds.

Survivors may lose their sense of self after experiencing trauma. Art helps move thoughts and emotions from the subconscious to the conscious, allowing survivors to regain a sense of self and acknowledge these hidden feelings.

Survivors may also suffer from lower self-esteem. Creating a piece of art leads to feelings of accomplishment. Art creation can help boost self-esteem. Studies show that creating art releases the neurotransmitter dopamine, which produces feelings of happiness. Increased dopamine levels can help combat mental health conditions like depression.

Art also provides a safe space for emotional release. Survivors may turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms, like alcohol or drugs, in order to deal with the emotions following trauma. With creative expression, survivors are able to express complex emotions they may not have the words for, allowing for a healthier outlet.

We will be offering a free Healing Arts group for anyone who would like to utilize art in their life to heal from any trauma, manage stress, or just because you enjoy creating with others. Groups will be kept small so reservations will be taken. Our first group is planned for May 27th @ 9am. We will begin with hand stitching a small quilted project. Fabric and supplies will be available for use during group or you can bring your own. If you would like to attend, please call our office and speak to Teresia at 256.574.5826 or you can email at Teresia@csna.org.

-Teresia Smith

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