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Power of Mental Health-Article May

I had the opportunity to participate in art therapy workshops several times, and that experience had a profound impact on me. Throughout my whole  life, I  always wanted to seek therapy by visiting a psychologist, but I never had the chance, courage or resources to do so. However, when I first heard about art therapy, I found myself wondering what it is and how it could help me.

As it turned out, art therapy is something entirely different. It provides a unique space for expressing one’s feelings without the need for words or talking.  And sometimes, when dealing with intense emotions, it’s the only thing you need.

During my first workshop, the theme was ‘touching.’ We began by shortly discussing our perceptions of touch, how it feels when people touch us. Then, the art therapist played music and gave us paints to illustrate our emotions. We lay down, and other participants drew our shapes. Afterward, we used these drawings to create new art. I thoroughly enjoyed the entire project. It helped me overcome stress stemming from my experiences during and after the war. It gave me a sense of relaxation. We also had discussions where we shared our thoughts on each other’s paintings and the emotions they conveyed. Our experienced art therapist even offered insights into our characteristics and personalities based on our artwork.

My most  favourite workshop was called ‘kintsugi.’ If I remember correctly, it’s a Japanese method. It was fascinating. The therapist asked us to draw a vase, to colour it to make the most beautiful vase for ourselves. We all did that and we liked it. Then, she handed us scissors and asked us to cut it. During that moment, we were shocked because we had made it so beautiful, and now we had to cut it. But as we split it, it felt as if we were breaking our emotions. Afterward, she provided us with small golden papers and glue, telling us to use them to put the pieces back together. We did, and the vase turned out even more beautiful than before. This method serves as a reminder to stay optimistic when things fall apart and to celebrate the flaws and missteps in life. Everyone can use this method in everyday life, when you feel depressed and anxious, just try to fill your life with good and positive things or do the things which really give you enjoyment.

Every time I left a workshop, I felt a sense of harmony. Even during the workshops, I felt like I had hidden talents. I am very proud and grateful for the opportunity I had. Mental health is crucial these days, and I hope that similar projects will be available in the future. I believe they are not only beneficial for those who have survived wars but also for everyone. They provide a space to explore one’s true self and discover hidden talents. If they organise new art therapy workshops, I will definitely be one of the active participants.