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Creativity for your health

Kate Cataldo

There is power in creativity in the face of change.

It’s no lie that social distancing is forcing a change of habit in all our lives.

The expectation that everything will go back to normal after this is rather naive, and I personally look forward to what the new normal will be when the world opens back up for business.

Everything depends on what we will do next.

Are we going to be better than we have been in the past?

Are we going to be able to recognize our faults and make the necessary adjustments in our lives in order to make a better world for our futures?

In the meantime, I wanted to share some reasons why creativity can be used to keep yourself positive and inspired during these hard times. Different habits can be incorporated into our daily routines during this downtime that will keep us motivated – practicing your creativity is a big part of that.

Aristotle once said, “We are what we repeatedly do.”

If you live in fear, then that is just going to be amplified right now, and it is so important to stay focused and refreshed every day, no matter how bad it hurts.

Don’t think you’re creative?

You are. Trust me, you most definitely are. There is one activity out there that allows you to make, create or innovate and expresses who you are, in your own way.

And, here are some reasons why it is important to express that creativity.

There has been research that creativity can predict a longer life expectancy. In a Scientific American article, “researchers found that only creativity – not intelligence or overall openness — decreased mortality risk. One possible reason creativity is protective of health is because it draws on a variety of neural networks within the brain.” The studies and research shows that creating decreases negative emotions, reduces stress and anxiety, while also improving medical outcomes. Therefore, not only can expressing creativity help you live longer, but it can improve your quality of health and life, too.

The art doesn’t have to be good or award worthy, but just scribbling and doodling with a pencil and paper should do the trick.

Introducing creativity into your daily routine will also help you become a better problem solver in all areas of your life and work. Instead of being more linear and logical, be open to a different approach.

Your creative side will help you with various situations from all angles.

Creativity will help you see things differently.

You will find that you will be able to tolerate uncertain circumstances because you will be able to easily adapt your thinking to allow for the flow of the unknown and unexpected.

Lastly, being creative comes with many ups and downs — along with a high risk of failure.

You have to be vulnerable to share your art and willing to be rejected. Most people will never even see your creations, and that is absolutely okay.

The creative process is a wonderful confidence booster. You will discover that failure is just part of the process. However, failure is survivable and you will realize that each piece of artwork you create helps you grow and get better — ultimately making the world a better place, too.

The only thing left to do is get rid of the fear and try.

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