My Southern African upbringing was vibrant, eclectic and sometimes unstable. Living alongside many different cultures and witnessing their diverse qualities of life made me deeply curious about people, especially women, surviving in a harsh and mostly male dominated world. What they taught me, was their capacity to embrace and live a creative life.
Creativity is a powerful way to begin to explore wellbeing in your life, to see a different way of ‘being’ and ‘doing’ even when you have very little. Connecting to our creative self, means the ability to perceive the world in new ways, to find hidden patterns, to make connections between seemingly unrelated experiences, solve problems and to generate solutions. It means taking risks, ignoring doubt and facing fears…our self-doubt and fears being one of the biggest causes of dis-ease in our mind, body and soul. Many of us believe we are not creative but we do it every day i.e. cooking, decorating, gardening and our clothing. The greatest misconception is that creativity is related to how well we can paint or draw.
As an Art Therapist, I am on a mission to dispel this myth and help people surrender to and connect more to their creative self; to let go of expectation and judgement and striving for the perfect end result which is often swathed in stress.
In Art therapy we surrender to the creative process, our unique expression of mark-making, symbolism and metaphor and what can blossom from this. The art holds a rich multi-sensory and multi-dimensional place to free our mind to make sense of, heal and let go of the pain of past experiences without the use of words. It is also a place to melt into the softness of your heart, a place where you can safely ‘see’ what lies within, a wellspring, the ‘knowing’ of what is right for you to re-discover a natural state of wellbeing. Creative explorations reveal new perspectives, and from these new perspectives, possibilities arise to transform old patterns of behaviour that no longer serve us. Exciting doors are opened that we didn’t even know were there, inspiring personal growth and healthier choices that align with our truth, values and authentic personal expression.
As clients explore their artwork, I am so privileged to witness their surprise, “I can feel some life coming back. The truth I see (in the artwork) sets me free.”
I feel so different; lighter and more balanced. I see me.”
“I came here feeling contained, confused, controlled, scared to feeling flowy, free…I have stopped holding on so tightly and have less anxiety in my chest.”
From my own personal journey, I believe self-acceptance and self-love are the source of wellbeing, which is why so many people who live with so little have the ability to create a meaningful and happy life. Thank you to my African roots. Thank for inspiring my passion for creatively guiding women on their journey towards more self-acceptance and self-love.
Article for Holistic Bliss Magazine, Sept 2019: What if Creativity was more than just Paintings & Drawings?