SELF EXPRESSION - DRAFT 

“There is only one you and that is your superpower."  - Brian Ford

WHAT IS SELF EXPRESSION?

Just as the term implies, self expression is a display of what makes a person uniquely themselves.  

WHY IS SELF EXPRESSION IMPORTANT?

"Research.. at the Georgetown Behavioral Health Institute confirms that self-expression in the arts positively affects mood, function, cognition, and behavior.  Self-expression plays a significant role in developing our capacity to relate to others and engage in deep relationships." - drawchange.org

 

WHO IS SELF-EXPRESSION FOR?

"Creative self-expression isn’t just for artists, it’s a fundamental part of being human. It’s a skill and capacity that helps us navigate our world and make the most of our life.  Self-expression is how we feel understood and share who we are with the world. " - YouHaveACalling.com

WHAT ARE SOME BENEFITS OF SELF EXPRESSION?

          > Self expression is a form of art therapy.  

          > It is a way to challenge societal norms.

          > It can be an outlet to process our emotions.

          > Self expression allows us to mindfully write our story.

          > Stress relief

          > Empowerment

          > "Art therapy is used to treat and respond to a variety of mental illnesses, traumas, or life transitions." drawchange.org

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO EXERCISE SELF EXPRESSION?

It can be free - or it can be as expensive as you make it.   Using nature (sticks, leaves, stones), volunteering, singing, improv, and dancing, as examples, are most often free.

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SELF EXPRESSION PRACTICES 

Comedy and improv

Creating cards

Dance

Decorating

Drawing

Expressive writing

Fashion/style

Music - singing, songwriting, listening

Photography

Poetry

Sculpture

Self-portraiture

Volunteering

Yoga

TESTIMONIALS

"I’ve used Creative expression to recover… from addiction, from cancer and to discover and set free my inner artist. This has all enriched my life beyond measure. " - Ellen

"Creative expression has saved my life since I was 11 years old and continues to help me survive as a survivor of abuse." - Natalia

WHERE CAN I LEARN MORE?

https://youhaveacalling.com/creativity/5-creative-ways-to-practice-self-expression

https://www.smartrecovery.org/self-expression-and-creativity-managing-feelings/

https://alanis.com/news/my-top-20-favorite-forms-of-expression

ENCOURAGEMENT

Song - "What Do They Know" by Tyler Braden - This song has a good message that other people do not know what is best for you or what you are capable of achieving.  But, sometimes, other people can speak from experience and their insight can be invaluable, so the answer to the rhetorical title question "what do they know?" is sometimes they know from experience just how hard it can be to venture out on your own in pursuit of your passions and how much harder it can be to come home without being the success as you imagined it.  Luckily, success is as you define it.  Being a successful artist (whether a musician, photographer, writer, or what-have-you) doesn't have to be measured in financial success or number of fans; some artists base their success on the positive impact it has in their life and the life or others.  
 

SELF-PORTRAIT ARTISTS TO FOLLOW 

Brooke Shaden - @BrookeShaden - an inspirational human with immense creativity, talent, bravery, and strength, sharing bits of her life and vulnerabilities through her art

Nicholas Bruno - creates amazing intricate self portraits as a way to cope with sleep paralysis

Sabrina Penguin - @HumdingerDarling - 18+ artistic nude, sometimes graphic art and self-portraiture sharing bits of her life, experiences, and continual self-rediscovery process; trigger warnings; homeless single mom 

REFERENCES

www.psychreg.org/misconceptions-art-therapy.

www.ikoninstitute.edu.au/top-5-creative-therapies-myths