Whether you can give Vincent van Gogh a run for his money, or can barely draw, art is a fantastic way to reduce stress. A 2016 study published within the Journal of the American Art Therapy Association found that just 45 minutes of artwork can reduce your stress, regardless of the artistic experience or talent.
Ways art helps us to reduce stress:
- It can take your mind off things.
It is difficult to keep ruminating on your problems when you are focused upon exploring artwork. If your problems stay with you, you can incorporate them into your visions. Once you are done, you should have a clearer head with which to tackle your problems again.
- It can help you tap into a "state of flow".
Similar to meditation, flow can lead to improved performance and lower stress levels. You can experience flow when you are practicing an instrument, playing a sport, or even gardening. You can also experience flow while writing, painting, or drawing.
- It helps you with self-care.
Taking even a few minutes regularly to devote to a hobby can give you more of what you need in this area. With art, you have the additional benefit of being left with something beautiful.
How to decorate your home for a de-stressing environment?
- Engage your senses.
Create a haven for your senses with a fluffy rug and luscious textiles, beautiful music, favorite art and photography books, and a delicious room fragrance. Close your laptop, shut off the TV, and allow yourself the simple pleasure of delighting your senses.
- Tend to green plants and fresh flowers.
Living plants add fresh oxygen to the air and remove toxins, which is especially important for our homes in fall and winter when we open our windows less often. But beyond plants' air-purifying effect, the act of tending to live plants or arranging cut flowers is a wonderful way to let go of stress.
- Lower the lights before bed.
Artificial light can throw off our natural sleep rhythms, especially at this time of year. Try getting out in the sun a bit each day and gradually lowering the lights for an hour or so before bed for a sounder sleep.
- Make your bed every morning.
Sometimes one simple thing can make your whole day go more smoothly, and I have found that making the bed is one of those things. No matter how rushed your mornings, taking a moment to smooth those covers will give you a sense that things are in order.
- Set your table every night.
No matter what you are serving, setting the table with real dishes, cloth napkins, and candles nourishes more than just our bellies; it signals us to slow down and appreciate what we have.
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