Art & Mental Health Chapter One
15 - Jan 2022
There has been so much written about art and mental health. I’ve experienced and continue to experience help with my mental health through art. Specifically though producing art.
Where I am now
The process begins with placing myself in a state of mindfulness. This is a conscious process, although it happens naturally without any ‘training’. You become present with where you are in that moment and pay attention. Another way to describe it perhaps is to focus on something and keep your attention there.
For me, this had always happened when I am out and about in nature and the big wake up call for me was realising I had lost that. The very thing that brought me joy and peace of mind had gone.
I was joyless
It may have looked like a mid-life crisis. Call it what you will, I was at my lowest ebb. Joyless, lifeless, depressed, anxious, sad and sick.
Some spark inside of me was looking to ignite the fire within. Something inside of me prompted me to reach out to myself for help. Some other part of me took charge and took action.
Where it all began
Some years ago, in 2018 to be precise, I booked myself onto an Inner Peace Retreat. I came across an ad in Psychologies Magazine and determined to go.
I couldn’t do it alone
For perhaps the first time in my life, I asked for help. I was in a bad way. Highly anxious. At the time I avoided people I didn’t know. I hated crowds. The thought of being in a room with total strangers terrified me. I could barely have a conversation. I didn’t venture out by myself. Get the picture?
I reached out to the person who would give me unconditional support. I called her up and said ‘Just say yes’ she did.
Part Two to follow