Many adults haven’t picked up a paintbrush since they were in school. What was once a fun creative outlet as children becomes stressful when the voice of your inner critic is too loud.

As adults we often feel a pressure to constantly be productive so if when we sit down to paint, we’re not creating something we deem ‘good enough’ then we simply don’t do it in the first place. If you can relate to these feelings, group painting therapy could help unlock your creativity.

If you try to start a creative habit at home, you’re likely to get distracted or see chores you need to do and prioritise them. By committing to a group, you’re setting time aside just for you and your art and this can help spark a joy which is likely to carry your creativity outside the group too.

The thought of creating in a group setting may sound nerve-wracking but once you’ve broken the ice it’s a great place to socialise and make new friends. The groups tend to be kept small to accommodate social anxieties and create a cosier feel.

You may also be thinking that you don’t feel like going back to school so you don’t want to attend painting lessons. While you’re sure to learn a lot, group painting is more about using art as a tool to express yourself. You won’t be expected to sit and take notes on history’s greatest artists, you’ll get to just get messy and see what happens.

Physical and Mental Benefits

Art therapy isn’t a new fad, multiple studies have shown that it reduces stress and promotes relaxation. Art is important to humans and both viewing it and creating it ourselves reduces our stress hormones. So add in a leader who can help guide you and the social aspect of the group, you’re likely to leave your sessions feeling a lot lighter!

As painting fires up many areas of your brain, and you tend to access your memory when deciding what to paint, your memory and overall cognitive function is likely to improve too.

Another benefit you’ll probably find is that your concentration will improve over time. With our constant state of over-stimulation due to work, social media, and screens, our attention span is shortening drastically.

When you shut out this extra noise and use all your focus to paint you can reset your brain over time, so it’s used to concentrating for longer periods again.

This is sure to make you more productive at work as well as a better listener, so you’ll see the benefits in all aspects of your life. Your observation skills will improve as you begin to focus on different colours and really study the objects or people you’re painting.

This can help you pick up subtle cues in body language and facial expressions which also improve your listening skills, so you’ll be a better communicator in no time.

The positives aren’t all in your brain though. Fine motor coordination is something we can lose as we get older, but painting is a great way to train it. Using brushes of all sizes means you’ll exercise different grip strength and positions and keep your fingers working.

Getting the paint onto the right section of canvas or paper strengthens your hand-eye coordination too so you can help keep your reaction times strong.

Your Future Self Will Thank you

With all these benefits and the only thing you have to lose being the group cost, what are you waiting for?

Zoe Harrison

Zoe Harrison, a Wellness Coach with a Master's degree in Health Psychology from UCLA, has been inspiring our readers since 2021. Her 15-year journey in lifestyle coaching, including a stint at a renowned wellness retreat, equips her to offer insights into holistic living. Her articles often reflect her belief in the power of mindfulness and balanced living. Zoe's passion for healthy living is evident in her practical and engaging articles. Outside her writing, she's an enthusiastic yogi and a promoter of community wellness programs.

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