Posted in mental health, Mindfulness, wellbeing, wellness

The Benefits of Drawing as a Mindfulness Activity (a guest post by Emma from Invaluable)

Today’s blog post is by guest blogger Emma from Invaluable who writes about the many health benefits of drawing and sketching. She includes a link to a related infographic with further detail and an opportunity to download a printable checklist of ideas and inspiration which you can stick in your sketch book or journal.

You don’t have to be a Leonardo da Vinci to reap the benefits of creating art. Artistic activities like journaling, crafting, and writing host a slew of benefits that many aren’t aware of, and drawing in particular has a variety of health and physical benefits. Drawing is a great activity for mindfulness, a way to reduce anxiety and let your brain focus on the task at hand while blocking out all other distractions and triggers. Next time you have the urge to sketch, instead of critiquing your own and focusing on improving skills, let yourself get lost in the activity and reap the endless benefits it has on our mind, body, and soul.

Drawing helps increase creativity. This is one of the reasons it’s highly recommended for children as the creation of vivid imagery forces us to use our imagination and in turn develops important areas of the brain.

Drawing improves memory. Drawing is an important activity for those with Alzheimer’s disease. It helps boost recalling skills and sharpen the minds through imaginative thinking.

Drawing improves communication. Drawing forces us to communicate through images, often without words, and this way of expressing inner thoughts and feelings often helps those who are shy or have certain disabilities.

Drawing helps relieve stress. Life is complicated, and an activity like drawing helps to relax from everyday demands. It’s a release, where many can temporarily exit the world of worries and focus on something more desirable.

Drawing increases our emotional intelligence. By enabling one’s emotions to be emitted through art, we in turn can have a better grasp on our feelings.

Sketching can also help you be more observant and improve your senses. Clearly, there are ample health benefits to drawing, listed above. Invaluable created a neat infographic that outlines all the science-backed benefits of sketching, and how we can use the practice to help with emotions we feel throughout our daily activities. It’s something anyone, even the most novice of crafters, can reap the benefits of, so use the visual printable for inspiration next time you’re willing to give it a try.

I hope you enjoyed reading about the benefits of mindful drawing and are keen to try out some of the ideas yourself. Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.