How drawing & doodling can boost mental health – no matter your artistic ability

You might have hated art lessons at school and have never rated your sketching skills, yet drawing as a creative pastime can be a powerful tool to promote positive mental health and wellbeing.

Drawing as a means of expressing our thoughts and feelings

Drawing helps us disconnect from stress, process feelings and convey our inner thoughts. Any form of creating art requires focus and concentration. It is easy to lose ourselves in sketching and doodling no matter if you intend to show it to others, keep it as a form of a journal, or simply discard the piece once you’re done with it.

It can be easier to express what we’re thinking on paper than it is to say it out loud. The process can be cathartic and be a means of moving through a form of self-therapy. You might consider keeping a sketchbook that allows you to record experiences and feelings and even look back through previous drawings to work out what has been going on during good, bad, testing, painful, happy and contented periods.

Tips for drawing for mental health

Drawing as a means to positive mental health does not need to be a formal type of art therapy working with a professional – though it can be. Taking a few moments each day to immerse yourself in some quiet time to doodle whatever you feel like can be a means of release and be a restorative experience.

Start with a blank page each time which becomes your medium through which to do whatever you like. Alternatively, you might begin a piece and add to it each day – almost like a comic strip. You can express humour to bring a little light to times that may feel dark and it can be powerful not to sanitise your thoughts and feelings as if to hide them and pretend all is well.

Drawing as a means to connect with others

You may wish to keep your drawings entirely private or share them with someone close to you. You might want to talk through what you’ve revealed with a person that you trust or use them as a very personal and intimate form of expression.

There are even people who have built something of a following on social media and the internet by uploading their works, connecting with strangers and documenting their progress through mental health issues, or simply daily life, in what becomes a form of a pictorial blog.

If drawing, sketching, painting or any form of artistic expression as a means of promoting positive mental health sounds like something you might like to try, you don’t need to spend a lot on art materials to get started. Take a look at our latest discount codes for stationery suppliers and retailers to save a little money too.

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