Recently, I realized that like many others, I’d been placing very little focus on self-care. Not to be confused with self-indulgence, self-care is a conscious act a person takes in order to promote their own physical, mental, and emotional health. Once I’d made a decision to prioritize caring for myself, I purchased a self-care journal for ideas, and so I could plan and actually remember to put these ideas into practice.
One of the activities suggested in the book is “try a new activity”. So I did. On a whim, I picked up some paintbrushes, a bunch of purty paint colors and some canvases. My plan was to just apply the paint to the canvas and see what happens.
Now mind you, up until this point in my life, my artistic ability had consisted of stick figures and weird-looking trees. So I decided to really try something new. Instead of painting a tree from an image in my mind of how I thought trees generally looked, I took the time to examine images of trees – photos on the internet, photos that I had taken and stored on my phone and trees right outside my window. Then I painted what I saw – with the image literally right next to my work area. The result wasn’t beautiful. But after doing it a few times, the images I painted looked less and less hideous – at least to me.
Over time, I found that not only do I really enjoy painting but that my creations weren’t too bad. I kept at it for several months – painting almost every day, and my results have gone from creating paintings that I hate (some of which I have literally tossed into the trash) – to creating paintings that are pretty darn amazing (hell yeah, they are).
I’m far from a professional artist at this point, but who knows? someday I might have my work hanging in a fancy-schmancy gallery with some sophisticated wealthy folks standing around saying, things like, “Daaahrling, I simply must have this piece in my sitting room.” Hey, you never know, right?
If you’ve been neglecting self-care, here are some activities you can try. Or simply spend some time looking at my art. Not only have studies shown that viewing art decreases stress levels and helps alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression, but it also triggers the same pleasurable physical response as when we fall in love.
so go ahead. Click here to make your eyes, your mind and your heart happy.
Do me a solid and “like” this post, leave a comment and share it. It’ll make my eyes happy!