Currently our nation is going through a traumatic experience. We are feeling the loss of control and helplessness while we are put on strict probation. Our world has seemed to change overnight, and we are now left to navigate this new world. On a positive note, because our world has drastically slowed down people are able to become more attune to their creativity.
How is this affecting our mental health? Many experts say that while going through a traumatic experience or relieving an event that negatively impacted the psyche, people cannot find the words to express the emotions felt. When thinking back trying to recollect and repair what was felt physically, mentally, emotionally, and sometimes socially people can feel lost. Sometimes the loss of words can make moving forward and working through the experience harder.
One debilitating effect of trauma causes us to feel at that loss for words; our stories can go unheard, making it feel like we are powerless. The nation is currently seeing many shifts in the way we view our normal and we are all having to sit with the feeling of unknown. This can leave us feeling helpless and bring up some past traumas, here are some ways that the expression of art can help us through these tough times. It is important to remember that our minds and our bodies can feel the effects of trauma. Below is a list of things to try on:
- Practice meditation: this can help us stay in our bodies
- Get up and groove, dancing can help us shake out many of the internal stressors
- Draw or paint: the messier the better! Getting in touch with your inner child can help you find a sense of relief
- Write; writing out our thoughts can help find the emotions.
A., Van der Kolk Bessel. The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma. Penguin Books, 2015.
Natasha Griffin is a Marriage and Family Therapist, Trainee. She is supervised by Danielle Fitch, LMFT #94672.