Creativity May Help Reduce Stress for Lasting Recovery

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Creativity May Help Reduce Stress for Lasting Recovery

creativity and stress

You likely know by now that stress management is crucial to your long-term sobriety – and for dealing with the day to day of rehab. Now, new research shows that a little creativity may just be the perfect anecdote to anxiety.

Even creating for 45 minutes with simple art supplies like markers and paper can decrease levels of the stress hormone cortisol, found researchers in a small study published in Journal of the American Art Therapy Association. And perhaps the best part, explained researchers, is that “everyone is creative and can be expressive in the visual arts when working in a supportive setting.”

So why exactly does spending time being creative reduce stress? This is partly because artistic work requires focus, which can distract you from stressful thoughts, noted researchers. Similar to meditation, artistic expression – whether painting, drawing, creative writing, or songwriting – provides a mental space from day to day stressors. And this mental space can allow you to put your thoughts and progress in perspective.

This isn’t the first research to link creativity with calmness and increased positive emotions. In fact, this has also been the case in multiple studies on art therapy, which has become an integral part of the addiction services in many rehabs. When used alongside evidence-based addiction treatments, art therapy has been found to help clients reduce stress and anxiety as well as increase self-awareness and self-esteem and better manage destructive thoughts and behaviors.

Stress Management at Seabrook
In addition to our standard addiction treatment services, we offer clients complimentary therapies, wellness programs and recreational activities. This includes our stress management group, which uses a combination of didactic presentations and experiential exercises to help patients understand and learn to manage everyday stressors. To learn more about our programs, call us today: 800-761-7575.