Art as an excuse to be healthy / l’art comme excuse pour être en santé

“ALL ART ARE QUITE USELESS” – Oscar Wild

Is it, really? No, I really really don’t think so. Let me tell you why.

Creating art relieves stress, encourages creative thinking, increases brain plasticity, and imparts other mental health benefits. And anyone can do art.

Art is good for your health… creativity is making you a healthier and a happier person.

I attend a creative activity (drawing, painting and using different techniques) workshop once a week. By learning different techniques, drawing or painting out of my imagination or according to a picture… either way, it’s stress relieving and a way to practice mindfulness because I don’t think of anything else. My problems are left out the door… or they are expressed in an all different manner.

An other way of being healthy through art is to visit a museum. It can change your thoughts, your feelings. Simply the act of viewing art gives pleasure, much like falling in love found Professor Semir Zeki, a neurobiologist at the University College London. Brain scans revealed that looking at works of art triggers a surge of dopamine in the same area of the brain that registers romantic love.(Ref)

Here are 6 reasons why imagination, creativity and self expression are good for you, for your health!

  1. Lower stress :
  2. Drawing, painting, sculpting, photography are hobbies that can lower your stress level and leave you feeling mentally clear and calm.

  3. Mindfulness :
  4. Creating art provides a distraction, giving your brain a break from your usual thoughts.

  5. Meditation :
  6. Creating art trains you to concentrate on details and pay more attention to your environment. In this way, it acts like meditation.

  7. Self esteem :
  8. You may stick your kids’ artwork on the refrigerator door to boost their self-esteem. Hanging your latest work of art on the wall can instill the same feeling in you.

  9. Mental concentration :
  10. Creating art increases the feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine. Dopamine has been called the “motivation molecule.”It boosts drive, focus, and concentration.

  11. Anti-aging :
  12. Crafting hobbies of all kinds — knitting, quilting, sewing, drawing, photography, woodworking, gardening, and do-it-yourself home repair — increase dopamine, ward off depression, and protect the brain from aging.

  13. Social connection :
  14. Attending art workshops or class add a social layer and that socializing is so beneficial. Helps with brain connections, boost self esteem, provide sens of accomplishments

I encourage you to go out and visit expositions in galleries and museums and experience art by creating some yourself!

ALL ART ARE QUITE USEFUL… for socializing, for the brain and the heart, for your overall health. Oscar Wild was, to my point of view, quite wrong!

what do you think? Do you enjoy art? What is your favorite art form?

In health,

Chantal


“TOUS LES ARTS SONT TRÈS INUTILS” – Oscar Wild

Est-ce vraiment le cas? Non, je ne pense vraiment pas. Laissez-moi vous dire pourquoi.

La création artistique soulage le stress, encourage la pensée créatrice, augmente la plasticité du cerveau et confère d’autres avantages pour la santé mentale. Et n’importe qui peut faire de l’art.

L’art est bon pour la santé … la créativité vous rend plus heureux et en meilleure santé.

Je participe à un atelier de création (dessin, peinture et utilisation de techniques différentes) une fois par semaine. Apprendre des techniques différentes, dessiner ou peindre à partir de mon imagination ou selon une image … peu importe, c’est une façon de soulager le stress et de pratiquer la pleine conscience parce que je ne pense à rien d’autre. Mes problèmes sont laissés de côté … ou ils sont exprimés d’une manière tout à fait différente.

Un autre moyen d’être en santé grâce à l’art est de visiter un musée. À simplement regarder des œuvres d’art, cela peut changer tes pensées, tes sentiment dit le professeur Semir Zeki, neurobiologiste à l’University College London. Des analyses du cerveau ont révélé que regarder des œuvres d’art déclenchait une poussée de dopamine dans la même région du cerveau qui enregistre l’amour romantique. (Ref en anglais seulement)

Voici 6 raisons pour lesquelles l’imagination, la créativité et l’expression de soi sont bonnes pour la santé!

  1. Moins de stress:
  2. Dessiner, peindre, sculpter, photographier sont des passe-temps qui peuvent réduire votre niveau de stress et vous permettre de vous sentir mentalement clair et calme.

  3. Pleine conscience:
  4. La création artistique fournit une distraction, donnant à votre cerveau une pause par rapport à vos pensées habituelles.

  5. Méditation:
  6. La création artistique vous permet de vous concentrer sur les détails et de faire plus attention à votre environnement. De cette façon, cela agit comme une méditation.

  7. Estime de soi:
  8. Vous pouvez coller les œuvres de vos enfants sur la porte du réfrigérateur pour renforcer leur estime de soi. Accrocher votre dernière œuvre d’art au mur peut vous inculquer le même sentiment.

  9. Concentration mentale:
  10. la création artistique augmente la dopamine, un neurotransmetteur de bien-être. La dopamine a été appelée «molécule de motivation». Elle stimule la motivation, la concentration et le focus.

  11. Anti-âge:
  12. créer des loisirs de toutes sortes – tricoter, quilter, coudre, dessiner, photographier, travailler le bois, jardiner et réparer soi-même sa maison – augmente la dopamine, protège de la dépression et protège le cerveau du vieillissement.

  13. Lien social:

Assister à des ateliers d’art ou à des cours ajoute une socialisation et celle-ci est tellement bénéfique. Elle aide les connexions cérébrales, renforce l’estime de soi, donne un sens aux accomplissements.

Pour toutes ces raisons, je t’encourage à aller visiter des expositions dans des galeries et des musées et à expérimenter l’art en créant toi-même!

TOUTES LES FORMES D’ARTS SONT TRÈS UTILES … pour socialiser, pour le cerveau et le cœur, pour ta santé globale. Oscar Wild avait, selon moi, tout à fait tort!

Qu’est-ce que tu en penses? Aimes-tu l’art? Quelle est ta forme d’art préférée?

Santé!

Chantal

Christmas Series: Giving To The Homeless / Donner aux sans-abris

This year, my children’s school has a wonderful project for Christmas; give a gift box to the homeless people of Liège.

This box must contain non-perishable mixed products, easy to open and ready to eat without cooking or warming up.

It’s a project that makes children aware that some people do not have a house, no kitchen, no food, no bed, no clothes, etc. They only have what they find and what they are given.

In addition to preparing a box, children need to think about what they would be willing to give, from what they own, for someone in need.

“I would give my house”

“I would give my 5€ bill”

“I would give my …”

It feels good to be in a position of empathy, sympathy, generosity.

Our children are rich in shelter, family, 3 meals a day, health care, toys, love, etc.

In any case, mine are. I am therefore very happy to be able to participate with them in this project.

Thanks to this shoebox, we have rich conversation of meaning, love and sharing.

This year, we give to the homeless!

Want to do the same but don’t know what to give? Here’s what we gave: two boxes, each containing 2 canned vegetables, 1 can of legumes, tissues, toothbrush and toothpaste, soap, chocolate-flavored soy milk drink, chocolate candies, Christmas chocolates.

It would also have been nice to add gloves, a scarf, warm socks, bandages, etc.

And you, how do you give back? To whom?

I’m Grateful and Thankful

Chantal


Cette année, l’école de mes enfants a un magnifique projet pour Noël ; donner une boite cadeau aux sans-abris de Liège.

Cette boite doit contenir des produit mixtes non périssables, facile à ouvrir et prêt à être consommés sans cuisiner, réchauffer.

Projet qui sensibilise les enfants au fait que des gens n’ont pas de maison, pas de cuisine, pas de quoi manger, pas de lit, pas de vêtements, etc. Ils ont seulement ce qu’ils trouvent et ce qu’on leur donne.

En plus de préparer une boîte, les enfants doivent réfléchir à ce qu’ils seraient prêts à donner, parmi ce qu’ils possèdent, pour une personne dans le besoin.

“Je donnerais ma maison”

“Je donnerais mon billet de 5€”

“Je donnerais mon…”

Ça fait du bien de pouvoir se mettre dans une position d’empathie, de sympathie, de générosité.

Nos enfants sont riches d’un toit, d’une famille, de 3 repas par jour, de soins de santé, de jouets, d’amour, etc.

En tout cas, les miens le sont. Je suis donc très heureuse de pouvoir, avec eux, participer à ce projet. Grâce à cette boite à soulier, nous avons de conversation riches de sens, d’amour et de partage.

Cette année, on donne aux sans-abri!

Tu veux faire la même chose mais ne sais pas quoi donner? Voici ce que nous avons donné: deux boîtes contenant chacune 2 conserves de légumes, 1 conserve de légumineuses, des mouchoirs, une brosse à dents et un dentifrice, un savon, une boisson de lait de soja aromatisé au chocolat, des bonbons au chocolat, des chocolats de Noël.

Il aurait aussi été possible d’y ajouter des gants, une écharpe, des chaussettes chaudes, des pansements, etc.

Et toi, tu redonnes comment? À qui?

Je suis reconnaissante et appréciative.

Chantal

Give a Gift of an experience and create memories

For Christmas, the commercial tradition commands to offer gifts. Fortunately, there is no obligation!

Adults and children have too many things. We become disillusioned and we do not appreciate any of it anymore.

But, if you still want to give, why not offer something to live and experiment rather than an object? How about offering your time?

I know it’s trendy to offer an experience rather than a thing. It is very “zero waste” and I appreciate that aspect but, what drives me more towards this type of gift is that it creates memories. It contributes to well being

Doing an activity with someone you love, creates unforgettable memories. When I live such a moment, I am growing as a person. Personal growth, gratitude and giving, all contributes to my health.

These memories are inked in us for ever, they become part of oneself.

On the contrary, things are just things. I can live or experience something special with it for a while. It can even be useful and help me do things and experiment in life, but I need at least one person to share it with, for it to become a memorable experience. Things and stuff, I have. At one point, it will create waste and I will forget about it. But, the time spent with that friend/brother/kid will last all my life.

I find it personally rewarding to offer an experience that I can live with someone. Of course, that same person can choose to do that activity with someone else.

It’s your choice to make when you offer it.

You can also choose to offer some of your time. This way, you can help that person in different ways. I think it’s a great thing to be able to spend time with people you love, it’s priceless.

Here are some ideas:

A written promise to babysit for your friend, your brother or your sister

Tickets or a gift certificate/voucher for a cultural activity (cinema, theater, opera, music concert)

Tickets or a gift certificate/voucher for a sports activity (match, ski day, skydiving, hebertism, climbing)

A subscription at a sports center, a health club

Whatever experience/activity you choose to offer, it can also be accompanied by a meal, a snack, a drink, a coffee, a tea in your company.

For example,

  • This card is a voucher. It is exchangeable for 3 hour of babysitting the week night of your choice so you can enjoy these two movie tickets with the person of your choice. I will come to your house and babysit name.
  • I offer you a night out. First, I invite you to this (name) fine dining restaurant followed by a comedy show. Ticket included!
  • I offer you a special day including a lunch, a movie and a snack afterwards.

If you find it difficult to present such a gift, you can put the voucher in an original recycled box. In fact, you can be very original in your written presentation and in its packaging. You can make an Origami box, you can wrap your box with the furoshiki method using a scarf, fabric, a towel, an old world map and even old newspapers. You can even put it in a basket.

In short, be creative! Have fun, enjoy and be grateful!

In health,

Chantal

Unwind while doing something practical

You know when everyone has the same wine glass and, at some point, you don’t know which is yours anymore ? Well, this is a fun and very easy DIY project that solves that kind of mixup. Plus it is the kind of project that enables you to relax and be mindful.

Cutting cardboard and styling your handwriting allows you to focus thoughts on what you do and suddenly, you become mindful and you can relax!

Ready to unwind?

To make wine glasses name tags you will need cardboard. The colour is your choice. Here, I chose black so I can use them again in a different contexts. If you want to make them more christmassy, you can choose red or green cardboard. Whatever you prefer.

Then, take a wine or champagne glass, put it on the cardboard and circle its base with a pencil. Do that step as much has you have guests. Draw a second circle in the middle approximately the size of your glasses stand. I used a small coin to contour, so it can be a perfect circle.

Choose either your guests names or words that you find appropriate. I chose words (in French because my family speaks french) that are also wishes; like Health, Joy, Happiness, Love, Peace and Hope.

Choose either marker or crayon of a bright colour, that contrasts with the colour of your cardboard. It will be easier to read. Write the names / words down in the circles you’ve drawn, limiting them inside. Leave a blank space. Use your best handwriting.

Then, cut along the circle lines as best as you can. Take your time and constantly turn the cardboard so you cut evenly.

Cut a straight line towards the center of each circle. Cut the inner circle using the technique mentioned above.

They are ready to use! Aren’t you relaxed yet?

Meditation

Every time possible, ideally every day, I take time to meditate. 15 to 20 minutes.

For me, it’s before I start my day or before the kids come back from shool.

Early morning helps me set up a great mood and focus for the day.

In the afternoon, it helps go through the rest of the day and be more mindful with my kids.

I meditate with a mantra. I had gone to the Maarichi’s school of meditation and got a personal mantra. But I also use other mantra according to what I want to work on. And sometimes, I just follow and concentrate on my breath trying to be mindful.

Either way, it’s very good for my health and wellbeing.

Do you meditate?