“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have” Maya AngelouWhile some people might not consider art one of their strengths, everyone is capable of creating and enjoying it. Art is a way of letting your consciousness meet your unconsciousness. It can be an incredible medium to connect us both to parts of ourselves we didn’t know where there and to each other.
The landmark "Creativity and Aging Study” by Gene D. Cohen, M.D., Ph.D. demonstrated that professionally conducted, sequential arts-learning programs promoted better health and disease prevention among older adults who actively engaged in them. Cohen and other researchers have shown that structured arts education fosters mastery and promotes social engagement – key deterrents to feelings of isolation and loneliness at any age.
Producing art requires creativity which helps us improve our physical, mental and psychological well-being. Here are just a few of the benefits that art provides:
Improves mental health
- Provides a sense of control
- Reduces depression and anxiety
- Fosters a stronger sense of identity
- Nurtures spirituality
- Helps individuals relax
- Assists in socialization
- Encourages playfulness and a sense of humor
- Increases self-esteem
Improving cognition and stimulation
- Reduces boredom
- Offers sensory stimulation through hearing, seeing and touching
- Opportunity to learn a new skill
- Actively uses both sides of brain simultaneously
Increased motor skills and coordination
- Helps with fine motor skills in the hands, wrists and fingers
- Improves balance
- Increases blood flow
- Increase in reaction time
Here are some ways to spark your creativity:
- Write your life story! Document the exciting and memorable moments in your life with these memoir prompts
- Take a virtual class through the Mesa Arts Center! Offerings can include Dance for Parkinson’s Disease, Creative Aging Classes, Chair Yoga, and Arts in Mind!
- Sing along to some of your favorite classic songs with this Senior Sing Along playlist!
At Homethrive, we believe that anyone of any age, with or without previous exposure to the arts, can become a practicing artist and reap the health rewards of achieving a sense of mastery. If you're a Homethrive member, make sure you check with your Care Guide for activities in our Homethrive – Art at Home series. Our March class quickly filled up but stay tuned for additional dates this Spring and Summer!