Creativity as a constructive outlet // Blog

When your mental health takes a bit of a nosedive, and you start to hit that all time low point, it’s pretty easy to turn to some ‘not-so-healthy’ coping mechanisms to get you through. And that’s okay sometimes, we’re only human after all.

But when these coping mechanisms become something you start to depend on on a daily basis, that’s when you might want to re-evaluate … which is hard because, if you’re anything like me, by that point your motivation to ‘better yourself’ or whatever is pretty non-existent.

Last year was a particularly bad year for me personally, but rather than go into all that, I just wanted to share one POSITIVE way of coping that I employed, just in case anyone is stuck for ideas … 

I do something called ‘Bible Journaling’ in my free time (or during the time when I should really be studying, but let’s just gloss over that). It’s just a hobby that allows me to get creative and detach from the world and it’s long list of problems. It’s really simple too ~ I bought a (NIV) Bible off Amazon a few years ago, it’s got extra wide margins so you can write / draw / stick stuff, and I think the pages are a little stronger than normal Bibles as well. I literally just draw out some of the verses – the visual parts about stuff like ‘water’ or ‘stars’ or ‘nature’ or whatever are perhaps some of the easier ones to start off with, as you don’t have to wrack your brains for a suitable image.

I am totally aware you might be reading this and thinking ‘yeah … I’m not a Christian’, and that’s fine, I’m not here to preach my faith. It is something that has been a great thing in my life and has gifted me with a second family, but I understand that it is not something that appeals to everyone. Perhaps a way of making this creative outlet work for you is writing out some meaningful quotes or key phrases from a favourite book, and drawing around them or sticking down cut-outs from magazines around the words. Let your inner creativity out, because no matter what age you are, when you start, it feels like your a little kid again and it’s a really fun way to spend an afternoon in your own company.

The most IMPORTANT thing to remember is that it doesn’t matter how skilled you are at drawing. It’s not an art competition, no one will be judging your work. This is for your mental well-being (and if like me you are a Christian, it’s also a great way of exploring God’s word in your own personal way so as to grow stronger in your faith).

Nikki Hannon