Sunday 10th October was World Mental Health day. An opportunity to raise awareness of mental health issues and mobilise efforts in support of mental health. In light of this, we would like to mention a few ways that creativity can help to tackle those darker days that we all face. Be it in the company of friends, in a workshop, class, or spending some quiet moments alone - creativity helps us reconnect to our body and and re-centre our mind.
There is nothing unusual about mental health struggles. Most people will navigate difficult periods in their lifetime. In fact, figures show that 1 in 6 people in 2020 experienced a mental health problem. The hard part is feeling comfortable to speak out about these issues, but the more we do it the more support networks we will establish.
Coming up to almost two years of uncertainty, isolation and lockdowns due to the global pandemic, the effect of people’s mental health and wellbeing has been huge. As we try to return to ‘normal’ life, let’s all remember that it is okay to reach out to friends/family/loved ones when you are not feeling mentally well. In these times, it is best to return to simple activities which bring you calmness and joy.
Music can be a great way to relax and get those ‘happy hormones’ running around the brain. It can actually activate neurons in your brain; releasing dopamine and endorphins, lowering blood pressure and slowing the heart rate. All helping to elevate your mood whilst inducing relaxation and reducing stress. Whether it's listening to your favourite songs, making music yourself, or even singing and dancing with friends - this creativity and self-expression can significantly improve our mood, outlook, brain and body functioning.
There are many simple ways that you can implement creative practices into your daily life, inviting short moments of introspection and time out from the hustle and bustle. How about making a drawing-a-day? Give yourself 5 minutes - either focusing on an object/what you see outside or from the window, or just draw whatever flows from your mind. You can keep these and look back on them after a month to see all the different ways your incredible mind worked that day!
Our creative programmes allow reflection and a vital 'tuning-in' to yourself. They allow people the space to think calmly and freely, whilst be guided by trained practitioners. At Talitha we understand that everyone has their own pace and style of participating - you don't have to be an artist to make art, and neither do you need fine-tuned skills to be able to get creative and reap all the positive benefits of expression.
In the words of mental health charity Mind, if we all ‘do one thing’ for mental health then we will make a huge impact. You can help to spread the word, become a campaigner, learn about mental health inequality, or even donate to the cause. Together we can progress towards more open and honest conversations surrounding mental health and wellbeing, and really make a difference.
World Mental Health Day (October 10th) is an opportunity to raise awareness of mental health issues and mobilise efforts in support of mental health. Please feel free to share your thoughts and other initiatives in the comments below!