Art Therapy: The Healing Power

Art Therapy

Art Therapy: The Healing Power

Written By: Shaundtrya Ganasan, Licensed Counselor (KB11097)

"Art; a form of creative expression.

"Our daily life is filled with art.

Art lies everywhere. Be it in the music we listen to, the movies we watch or the home décor in our room. For centuries, humans have expressed themselves through arts. For instance, the drawings in ancient caves, religious places with advanced architecture, ancient manuscripts, the portrait of the Mona Lisa, and up to the latest high-tech movie Avatar. Art has also been a human's way of expressing themselves and entertaining others. The human way of expressing themselves through art has also been evolving over the years; from using a rock to craving a cave, humans are now using advanced technology to create artificial intelligence.

Art is also often utilized by many therapists as Art Therapy. It guides you to explore and express yourself through art, making art a healing medium in therapy. Art Therapy is a creative process of producing art that expresses your feelings, emotions and thoughts through non-verbally. It also navigates your healing and enhances your life further. Art Therapy sessions are usually conducted by trained and certified mental health therapists who incorporate different art mediums such as paint, colors, clay, music and so on to facilitate your healing during therapy.

Furthermore, Art Therapy is often utilized to address and express mental health-related concerns such as depression, trauma and anxiety. Art Therapy alone does not heal one's trauma, but Art Therapy along with therapy enhances one's healing process through exploring and communicating your experiences, thoughts and emotions. Art Therapy also provides you with a non-judgmental and safe space for you to express yourself through creativity. This helps you to gain clarity and insights into your issues and develop healthy coping skills.

Reminder: If you or your loved ones are looking for art therapy sessions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us at Soul Mechanics KD or Soul Mechanics Ipoh. Remember, seeking help is not a sign of weakness but strength!

Types of Art Therapy
1. Visual Art Therapy

Visual Art Therapy involves using art materials such as clay, paint, wood, paper, photography, etc. It is a form of art therapy that helps you to express your inner emotions, feelings and experiences. It brings your mind to the colors, textures, brushstrokes, and shapes of your visual arts; promoting here and now. You can express and communicate your feelings that could not be expressed verbally through the images created through visual art. For instance, clay can help regulate your feelings by reshaping and transforming them the way you want to express yourself.

Art Therapy

Photography and painting also help you recreate painful memories with beautiful ones through your camera lenses or paintbrushes. New visual arts such as paint by number or diamond painting make anyone give a try to visual arts conveniently, although you are not skilled in drawing or painting. All you need to do is focus on the numbers in the sketch and paint accordingly. It helps you to calm your constantly working mind and enjoy the present moment.

2. Music Therapy

Music Therapy involves anything related to music, such as singing, listening to music or playing a musical instrument. It is a form of art therapy that helps you calm your mind through your preferred music genre. Music Therapy isn’t only about playing known music but also about creating new music or beats according to your creativity. It would help you enjoy the music and regulate your emotions through the beats and rhythms of your created music.

Through music therapy, you can explore your inner feelings and emotions. Music takes you on an abstract journey; when you return, you can feel much refreshed and lightened. Moreover, music therapy is also known to bring many positive cognitive, physical, and psychological changes and helps you connect with people who prefer the same music genre. With new applications constantly being created, you can explore your interest in music by installing applications that provide digital versions of instruments such as piano, drums, flute, etc.

3. Dance Therapy

This type of therapy involves various types of dance and movements being involved. Dancing, along with music, helps you change the way you feel. For instance, fast-movement dance helps you regulate emotions and stress levels; slow dance helps to release pent-up feelings gradually. Like other art therapies, Dance Therapy also helps you explore your emotions and feelings and express them through body movement, which you may not feel comfortable expressing verbally or through words.

Art Therapy

Dance Therapy guides you to gradually feel more comfortable and confident about your body. It removes your negative feelings towards your body. Dance Therapy can also be viewed as a form of exercise that keeps you fit and healthy with emotional balance. It encourages you to loosen up your stiff muscles that usually hold on to unwanted emotions and feelings and sway along the music beats and rhythms. You can also practice Dance Therapy by joining classes like Zumba dance, Aerobics and so on with your loved ones to create a physically and mentally healthy society.

4. Drama Therapy

Drama Therapy involves various theatre and drama techniques as a medium for healing. The techniques include acting, mime, role plays, delivering speeches, making costumes, directing, etc. It may provide relief from your suffering and painful experiences. This type of therapy helps you to disclose and express your thoughts and feelings out of your mind through the drama play. Through exploration of your painful experiences and emotions, you may also address your problems and understand your relationship with others better through Drama Therapy.

Imagination is something that has been emphasized in Drama Therapy. For instance, if you feel you have not gotten over your memory where your colleague has emotionally intimidated you, you can learn to become assertive through drama through your imagination which would help you to release your pent-up emotions. This facilitates your healing from the painful experience and also to develop assertiveness in real life when needed. In short, drama therapy facilitates healing through personal development and emotional balance.

Reminder: If you or your loved ones are looking for therapy sessions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us at Soul Mechanics KD or Soul Mechanics Ipoh. Remember, seeking help is not a sign of weakness but strength!

Benefits of Art Therapy
1. Self-Expression

Art Therapy helps you explore and discover parts of yourself (e.g. hidden talents, desires, suppressed feelings, thoughts.) that you may not be aware of. Expressing yourself through Arts also improves your cognitive capabilities such as increased attention, problem-solving and memory. Thus, it also enhances self-awareness and personal development through the insights you gain through Art exploration.

2. Emotional Regulation

Art Therapy also aids you in managing and regulating emotions by expressing yourself through art, especially for those with traumatic experiences. Art Therapy navigates you in processing your trauma and facilitates your healing. Through the self-awareness you gain, you are able to improve your overall mood. Furthermore, emotional regulation through Art tends to provide you with a sense of accomplishment; leading to increased self-esteem. Better emotional regulation leads to stress reduction and improved physical health.

3. Socialization

Art Therapy is also often conducted in a group format, allowing you to connect and build relationships with others. It helps you to create new connections with people with similar interests. It also strengthens bonds with close ones if practiced together. Art Therapy improves communication skills through alternative expression for individuals who struggle to socialize and verbally articulate their feelings and thoughts. It creates a safe space to socialize with others through their art instead of forcing themselves to communicate verbally.

Art Therapy

In short, Art Therapy is a type of therapy that facilitates one’s healing; promoting healthy emotional, physical and cognitive well-being. You can also incorporate some basic art techniques in your day-to-day life as a form of self-care. For instance, creating spontaneous artwork, decorating or setting up your home or office space, gardening, etc. Nevertheless, it is essential to remember that art therapy can be an intense and powerful tool. But it is not a replacement for therapy. For further assistance, it is advisable to consult a mental health therapist to seek professional guidance.

If you’re looking for a therapist in Kota Damansara or Ipoh area, you can click here for more information.

If you enjoyed reading this, why not broaden the horizon of knowledge by learning about "Emotional Freedom: The Art of Letting Go"? You can read the blog here.

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“Art communicates when words fail to express”.

Shaundtrya Ganasan, Licensed Counselor (KB11097)


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