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Home Let’s Talk Blog: Detourist – Amy Five Magic Steps to Turn Creativity Into Happy Mental Wellness

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    AmyOes
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    <p class=”graf graf–h3″><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Can You Prove the Art of Happiness?</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Yes — you can. If anyone can be an artist, then anyone can be happy.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>And yes — you are an artist, too.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>How can art make you happy if you’re not good at art? And what does art solve, anyway?</span></p>
     
    <p class=”graf graf–figure”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”></span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Creativity: The Art of Happy</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Art and creativity cures a problem that we all share at times — boredom. I’m not just talking about commercial breaks, a meeting at work that never ends, or traffic-light-kind-of-boredom. Creativity is a mind-set, a way of seeing the world. Creativity puts the magic back in life, so not only are we never bored, we are constantly inspired, present, empowered, and — dare I say it — happy.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>I’m going to assign you an “art project”. But don’t be scared. The gluesticks and crayons are only required if you want them to be. This project teaches you how to see.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–figure”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”></span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Let me explain with a little story about my younger self…</span>
    <span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>  As a kid, I always used to complain to my older brother, “I’m bored!” Even when I was little, I was always darting about from activity to activity. My mind was racing and I was antsy with ideas.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>His response was always, “Why are you bored?”</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>I didn’t know.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Then I’ll never forgot what he got me as a birthday present that year. His card was a simple little hand written post-it note that said,</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p graf–startsWithDoubleQuote”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>“This is so you’ll never be bored again.”</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>I opened it, hoping it was some kind of toy or exciting little gadget. But it was just a soft-cover activity book for me to fill out. I had that natural let-down when you get your hopes up and really just get…a book.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>No! Not a book!</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>But then I looked at the cover and it said “Things I Can Be Happy About.” It was a workbook for me to fill in. It was filled with a bunch of blank, numbered lines, broken up into categories like “Outside”, “School”, “Friends”, “Activities” etc. I don’t think I ever filled it out, but I got the idea.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–figure”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”></span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>The no-fail cure for boredom…</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>My brother was trying to teach me my first lesson in gratitude. If you realize what you can be happy about, it’s hard to ever get “bored.” Instead of getting “bored”, he wanted me to get “appreciative.”</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>A lot of times when we’re bored, we’re just unhappy. And it might just take too much energy to think about what we should be happy about. So I have a little exercise I like to do. I also think it’s a great idea to try with kids, who get tend to tire of things quickly, or might not always remember how much there is to be happy about.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>And then on the other end, sometimes kids are the ones who remind us to be happy about the simple things. Kids can be miniature wise-adults, and grown-ups can have the fearless abandon of a child. That’s how we all balance each other out.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>In my TEDx Talks, I talked about how creativity saved my life….</span></p>

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    <div class=”aspectRatioPlaceholder-fill”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”> </span></div>
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    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>But it also made me extremely happy.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Creating excitement…</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–figure”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”></span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>So with that in mind, this is my exercise for kids, adults, and the kid-adult in all of us.</span>
    <span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>  Today I invite you to see things differently. All it takes is a little mind-bending. We’re never too old to create fantasies. These are some out-of-the-box ways to view any ordinary, boring moment in life and bring it to a completely new dimension.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>When we elevate the everyday, we can’t get bored. We’re struck by every laughing tree, every popping color, every breath of sunrise.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>And even better, that whimsical fascination with the world around us might even inspire us to create…and with a project to do or a idea in our heads — how the heck can we get bored???</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>These are some ideas to view the world differently. Try each one on for size, then share it with someone else!</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–figure”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”></span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>How to use creativity as a mindset:</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>1.) See the human face in everything — does that tree trunk remind you of a friend’s face?</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>2.) Be curious: ask childlike questions about the world around you like what makes the sky blue or the clouds look like that?</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>3.) Be a poet and describe the world around you in haikus!</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>4.) Take a walk and only make left turns — a lot of them!</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>5.) View everything solid as liquid and everything liquid as solid. How does it feel to walk on liquid grass?</span></p>
     
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>I could go on and on with ideas, but go ahead, create some of your own! Do it just for the sake of adding a spark to your day.</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Share it with a friend to give them a reason not to ever be bored — I’m sure they’ll fire back with their own ideas!</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”> </p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Art empowers me with the ability to create a ripple of happiness. As a human who can make “art”, I know that I have the power to make this happen every moment, with even the smallest of gestures. Art is how we tell our stories.</span>
    <span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>  A random act of kindness, a tender word, a brush stroke — whatever works. How will you make your mark on the world?</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Start with a scribble…</span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–figure”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”></span></p>
    <p class=”graf graf–p”><span style=”font-size: 12pt;”>Amy Oestreicher is a PTSD peer-to-peer specialist, artist, author, writer for Huffington Post, speaker for TEDx and RAINN, health advocate, survivor, award-winning actress, and playwright. As the creator of “Gutless & Grateful,” her BroadwayWorld-nominated one-woman autobiographical musical, she’s toured theatres nationwide, along with a program combining mental health advocacy, sexual assault awareness and Broadway Theatre for college campuses and international conferences. To celebrate her own “beautiful detour”, Amy created the #LoveMyDetour campaign, to help others cope in the face of unexpected events. “Detourism” is also the subject of her TEDx and upcoming book, My Beautiful Detour, available December 2017. She’s contributed to over 70 notable online and print publications, and her story has appeared on NBC’s TODAY, CBS, Cosmopolitan, among others. Learn about her art, music, theatre, advocacy, book, and inspiring story at amyoes.com, or “tweet me at @amyoes!”</span></p>

    • This topic was modified 1 week, 2 days ago by  AmyOes.

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