How many times have you been told that creativity is good for your mental health, but did not know how it would actually help keep the doctor away?

Turns out it can help – a lot!

There’s real science behind why we feel more energised when our minds are engaged creatively. Creativity has been shown to have a wide range of physical benefits for both the mind and body. From lowering blood pressure, enhancing immune function- even something as simple like stress management is helped by creativity!

What could be better than being creative? Well, there might actually exist some pretty impressive physical benefits of creativity. Creativity has been shown time and again to help improve mental health (and who doesn’t want an improved mood?), but it turns out that creatives also reap physical rewards like lower blood pressure or increased immune function

  1. Lowers blood pressure: It’s been scientifically proven that participating in creative activities can lower your blood pressure. One such study from the University of East Anglia, UK, undertook research that discovered people who were more creatively inclined, had lower overall systolic pressures at the end after four weeks. In fact the study showed so many benefits also including less depression symptoms, better mental wellbeing and a sense of calming, that the study’s lead actually recommended creativity should be used as a“positive prescription”
    • Unsurprisingly, research from Boston College found that using your imagination can help manage emotional distress. The participants in the study used a technique called “guided imagery,” – which encourages you to picture a safe place or situation where you feel relaxed and peaceful in order to improve your mood during stressful events. They were less anxious and stressed when they did this compared with other participants who didn’t use guided imagery during their stressful event.
  1. Fights Against Colds & Flu: Unleashing your creativity could help prevent those colds and flu this winter, according to research from Carnegie Mellon University. The study found that people who typically draw or write daily were about half as likely to catch a cold or flu compared with their less creative counterparts.
    • Being creative makes us more likely to be social, too – so it’s no wonder that research from the University of Queensland found it helps boost our immune system. Being around people not only reduces stress levels, which can hurt our immunity, but it also encourages us to share our germs – which is good for building up our resistance.
  1. Helps You To Live Longer: A study from Kingston University found that creative types live longer than their less imaginative counterparts. Researchers looked at data collected on 674 people over 10 years. They found those who engaged in more creative activities like writing or working with numbers had a lower risk of death overall – even if they didn’t exhibit any signs of dementia towards the end of the study period. The researchers hypothesized that this could be because being creative improves brain function in other areas too (like logical thinking), which therefore helps us maintain healthy habits like exercising more often too…
  1. Makes You Smarter If you needed more reasons to get creative, studies have shown that being imaginative can make you, too – literally. According to Design Beast Review, it helps us solve problems in a different way to other people and makes us better learners because we’re able to come up with new ways of approaching tasks or information. Being creative also changes our brain chemistry, making us more open to new experiences and less likely to stick rigidly within our comfort zones.
    • Helps You To Think Outside The Box: Finally, research from Michigan State University found that being creative makes us more open-minded, which means we’re better at thinking outside the box. The study tested 180 people on their creativity by asking them to come up with new uses for everyday items – and found that those who were more imaginative were also less judgemental too. So if you need some help finding a new perspective… go and get a drawing!

 

  1. Helps Sleep: Being more imaginative can improve your sleep quality, too, according to research from North Dakota State University. Participants in the experiment spent nine weeks learning either an expressive technique, such as dance or drawing, or analytical problem-solving techniques like logic puzzles. A month later, they were quizzed on their sleep – and those who’d been learning expressive techniques reported fewer insomnia symptoms.

Creative people have a better quality of life than their creative counterparts. They experience less stress and live longer lives because they are able to find solutions for everyday problems with creativity in mind! 

So if you need some inspiration or ideas on how get through this winter without going crazy from the cold – why not try being more creatively inclined?

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