In addition to your acupuncture treatments and Chinese herbs, there are many things that you can do at home that can help you handle stress. Even if you never thought you were a creative person- you can barely draw a stick figure, tell the difference between a concerto and a sonatina or write like your favorite author- you can definitely use the creative process to help expel stress and negative emotions. Finding something that helps refocus your energy and gives you a break from thinking about your stressful day can really work wonders for your mental health!
Here are some suggestions to get you started:
- Figure out what you’d like to try and are curious about. This could be photographing flowers in the park, taking a beginner’s guitar lesson, dancing in your living room, painting birds, knitting, making cupcakes with the kids, etc. It doesn’t matter if you pick up an old hobby you used to love or find something completely new. Just find something that you have a genuine interest in.
- Set aside the time to actually do the activity! You set aside time for your favorite TV show, right? I promise that this will be more rewarding! I recommend thirty minutes at least three times per week. Even if you can’t think of anything to write or draw, just keep at it. Don’t give up if you feel like your idea isn’t good enough. You don’t have to show anyone if you don’t want to.
- Don’t be too hard on yourself! I cannot stress this one enough. Remember the first time you ever rode a bike and how you didn’t fall over or wobble at all? Yeah, neither do I. Everyone needs to start with the training wheels and basics. Sometimes you don’t like what you create. That’s totally fine. I’ve been doing art for my whole life and I can honestly say that I don’t like most of the things I paint. That’s okay. Its practice for the next painting.
- If you get bored, switch it up. Take your guitar to the backyard instead of practicing in the living room. Try creative writing instead of drawing. Remember: this is about you and no one else.
If you would like help or have any questions, feel free to ask! I’m always around. There are many classes and resources available in Southeastern Wisconsin, you just need to know where to look!
Nothing in this document is intended as a substitute for your doctor’s diagnosis and/or treatment. This statement has not been evaluated by the FDA.