Movie Therapy Redefines Modern Mental Health Treatment




For binge-watchers out there who are in dire need of mental health treatment, here’s a treat for you: movie therapy.


You read it right. Movie therapy also known as cinema or film therapy is a type of mental health treatment modality that allows its audience to seek self-awareness and positive life alterations through watching different media-related contents. As Birgit Wolz, PhD., MFT explains it, “Cinema therapy can be a powerful catalyst for healing and growth for anybody who is open to learning how movies affect us and to watching certain films with conscious awareness. Cinema therapy allows us to use the effect of imagery, plot, music, etc. in films on our psyche for insight, inspiration, emotional release or relief and natural change.” Therapists believe that movie therapy does have a series of psychological health benefits, assuming that watching a film enables examination of stressors and issues in the relationship, work, and life more personal, palatable and relevant.


Without further hubbub, here are some of the reasons why movie therapy is redefining the era of mental health treatments.




Movie Therapy Complements Other Psychotherapies

To say that movie therapy alone can relieve a person of his or her misery is far-reaching. In certain circumstances, depending on the illness of the person, primary psychological treatments are often combined with another type of therapeutic modality to make it more effective.


More so, therapists will adequately assess their patient’s condition first before opting for movie therapy as the primary treatment modality. This sense of productivity and awareness can aid in the progression of conventional counseling sessions.


Movie Therapy Is A Self-Induced Intervention

People watch movies or television shows mainly for enjoyment or as a form of pastime. But personally, people choose specific movie genres that they relate to especially those that reflect their aspirations, situations, and struggles. And the good news is, this content is currently available on a lot of platforms and devices that can easily be accessed and be rendered by Internet streaming, free library, or rental kiosks. You don’t have to look that far.


Aside from that, you don’t have to wait for the next psychotherapy session to gain some clarity and insight on your situation. “The idea is to choose movies with themes that mirror your current problem or situation. For example, if you or a loved has a substance abuse problem, he suggests Clean and Sober or When a Man Loves a Woman, or if you are coping with the loss — or serious illness — of a loved one, he may suggest Steel Magnolias or Beaches.” Gary Solomon, Ph.D., MPH, MSW said. There are tons of movie characters that are carrying similar burdens that you may find a connection with. Though your therapist will undoubtedly have a couple of film suggestions regarding your condition, you still can freely choose which shows resonate with you and learn from their challenges while taking notes of the resolutions.




Movie Therapy Facilitates Mental and Physical Breakthroughs

According to Shainna Ali Ph.D., LMHC, “A good movie prompts us to think. Aspects such as gaps in time and underdeveloped characters could be the foundation for film critique, or opportunities for your own truth.” Discovering the thoughts and emotions that you never knew existed is one of the goals of movie therapy. There are certain feelings that you have repressed or ignored for so long that when elaborately portrayed in a movie, create a healing process by opening doors to the subjugated psyche. After seeing yourself and your life played by the protagonist, sentiments that you’ve tried to subdue will resurface and can freely cross the unbearable threshold.


Movie therapy helps people realize that emotions must be felt and expressed rather than be restrained for all eternity. Sometimes, people who do not cry over death or loss will find themselves bawling their eyes out over Marley and Me.


Movie Therapy Offers Impassioned Expression

In a chaotic, stressful world, watching movies is a form of escapism – to distract oneself from the disturbing reality that one currently faces. Being mentally and emotionally engaged in your chosen film for the sake of getting your mind off of negativity is psychologically therapeutic. Even if it’s only for a limited moment, the time provided to set your mind at ease and be relaxed is soothing and rejuvenating to have you re-engage with real-life events.


With everything that’s going on in the world today, people are becoming less and less expressive of their thoughts and feelings and end up bottling up their emotions. And because not a lot of people are comfortable with the idea of opening up to some stranger, movie therapy is ideal for exploring psychological problems and eventually finding resolve in the privacy of one’s home.


This entry was posted in Films.

Top Movies Which Can Help You Cope With Depression

Any type of mental health disorder can sometimes be debilitating or isolating. However, there are various movies out there which capture the realities of these illnesses. If you are battling the blues of depression, watching a film you can relate to might provide a therapeutic distraction. Here are the top movies which can help you get through the hard times of depression.


Anomalisa (2015)

Experts believe that people who are the happiest on the outside are empty on the inside. Anomalisa shows the story of Michael Stone, a famous author of motivational books tackling corporate efficiency and reliable customer support. Despite helping people live happier lives, Stone was proven to be clinically depressed. He felt alienated from the world and angry with himself for bearing all of these negative emotions.

“Loneliness is an epidemic, We’re the most socially connected society, yet so many people experience extreme loneliness.” psychologist Amy Sullivan, PsyD.  said. The movie was successful in demonstrating the existential difficulties of an individual living with depression.

Inside Out (2015)

Inside Out is an animated movie which tackles how a person’s emotions work. According to its most loyal viewers, this movie lifted them since it made them laugh and cry at the same time. It also showed the importance of having both sadness and joy in their lives.


Cake (2014)

Cake is a movie starring Jennifer Aniston. Here, her main character, Claire, struggled with depression and anxiety after losing her son in a vehicular accident. Due to this traumatic experience, she also developed chronic pain. The bulk of the story revolved around her grief and hopelessness in her recovery process. It supports Ben Martin, Psy.D. statement when he says, “A stressful change in life patterns can trigger a depressive episode. Such stressful events may include a serious loss, a difficult relationship, trauma, or financial problems.”

Interiors (1978)

Interiors spoke volumes when it comes to showing the reality of depression. The film did not only shed light on the effects of mental illnesses to the patients, but it also tackled how mental illness affects the people around them.

In the movie, the character of the mother was suffering from dementia and depression. On the other hand, the character of the father developed a severe and undeserved resentment towards his wife. He felt that she was only a burden to their family in her current state. Upon knowing this, the mother attempted to commit suicide, and the unhealthy cycle of resentment and sadness dragged on until it affected their daughter.

Interiors is an honest, eye-opening, and authentic look at how seriously and sensitively we should treat depression.


The Hours (2002)

The Hours depicted three women from three different areas, with all of them suffering from depression. Other movies stress on traumatic events being the primary cause of acquiring this mental health disorder. However, this movie shows that people who are loved and cared for can also feel out of control.

The film also went through the rebuilding phase in the lives of these people. What makes this movie stand out is its ability to show a non-traditional view of depression and mental illness.

Even up to now, there is still a lot of false information and negative stigma on mental health. Hence, it is critical for movies like this to bring awareness about this sensitive topic to their viewers. “Depression is more than an emotion or a state of mind, it is really a process. It is a combination of thoughts, emotions, and behaviors.” Robert Allison, MA, LPC said.

This entry was posted in Films.

Why Baking Is The Perfect Way To Unwind

There are very few hobbies capable of soothing the mind and satisfying the soul. Baking belongs to the handful. After all, there’s nothing quite like coming home to the scent of coffee cake or the sight of a plateful of freshly baked cookies.


Culinary Arts Therapy

Culinary art therapy, often referred to as CAT, uses cooking as a means of therapeutic expression. It serves as an outlet for individuals who need an emotional outlet. As a meticulous form of preparation, baking requires immense concentration. As such, the nature of the focused activity helps in the redirection of thoughts—a subconscious form of therapy.

In a recent study, researchers have used a combination of CAT and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to help those dealing with grief. The results of the research were positive and suggested CAT can help limit the complications which come with loss.

It’s Personal

Baking can be a profoundly personal experience. Historically, women have been the designated domestic goddesses of the household, with the kitchen covering most of their domain. Over time, however, the culinary arts has grown to be more inclusive and all-encompassing. Cooking—and baking—has become more than a chore. Passion fuels baking. For some, it’s become a livelihood; for others, a form of empowerment. In some cases, baking has become a way to de-stress. Remember, “Everyone handles positive and negative stress differently. And yes, for some, positive stress can lead to a negative response to stress, depending on the situation.” says Jessica Harris, LCPC, LPC.

Baking can be advantageous for improving emotional health and has been known to help people deal with their depression or anxiety. “The physical act of baking,” according to Julia Ponsonby, author of The Art of Mindful Baking, “the way that you knead bread, for example, takes your mind out of the intellectual and connects you to your body.”


Benefits Of Baking

“Cooking helps mental health in that it can be a creative outlet. It’s a way to channel energy, can be used as a distraction, help build mastery in a skill, and a way to express emotions through a different medium.” Counselor Nicole Lambert said. Same as baking which provides a sense of relief. It channels all the negative thoughts and energy and transforms it into positive output. Overall, baking has several benefits we’ve listed below:

  1. Provides an outlet for self-expression. Baking allows you to push your limits and explore uncharted territories. Much like writing, painting, or music, it opens up your mind to new things and endless possibilities—in terms of recipes, decorations, you name it!
  2. Improves singular focus. Baking is like science. The process requires strict adherence to the recipe, thus honing one’s diligence. Its repetitive actions and feelings of being in control help you keep calm. On the other hand, working through each step of the recipe enables you to tune out the anxious thoughts. “For someone who battles negative thoughts, worries, and is constantly bombarded with doubt, fear, shame, cooking can be a healthy outlet to bring peace and serenity into their headspace.” Justyna Wawrzonek, LCSW, LADC, said.
  3. Sense of accomplishment. Think of it as a task or project, and the end product is a meal. Even if the outcome doesn’t taste as good as you expect, consider it a win. Knowing you began and completed the process all on your own is a perfect example of you working towards and attaining a goal.


    4. Calming effect of the smell. The scent of freshly baked goods provides the same kind of satisfaction aromatherapy does.

    5. Sense of self and others. Baking for both yourself and the people around you is a form of mindfulness. It creates opportunities to interact and spend time with others. It’s a cultural norm to give food as a sign of welcome to the neighborhood. You may also offer baked goods as a token of appreciation or a form of condolence.

What are you waiting for? Grab your bowl and apron. Ready, get set, whisk!

This entry was posted in Films.

Here’s What You Need If You Want To Start Art Therapy


The use of creative techniques such as painting, drawing, collage, sketching, doodling, and coloring is the highlight of art therapy. It is slowly becoming a trend nowadays because everyone who engages in it can express their emotions fully and freely through the use of art materials.

AThe concept of art therapy came from the idea that creative expression will make way for better mental health. Unleashing creativity can help people explore their emotions, boost their self-confidence, develop self-awareness, and improve their social skills.

Art therapy’s benefits know no age. Children, teenagers, and even adults can take it as a hobby whenever they wish to. Children suffering from social problems and learning disabilities would often resort to this creative therapy. It is also best recommended for people and adults experiencing severe stress or mental health issues. Art therapy is one of the best healing techniques, especially for those who have experienced traumatic events in their life.

Here are the things that you need to prepare to start art therapy.

Dry Supplies


This category includes mostly the writing and cutting supplies you need for the kind of art you are going to do. Some of these dry supplies also include crayons, markers, pens, pencils, stencils, stamps, drawing pads, and notebooks. “Art Therapy utilizes the use of art materials and the creative process to help clients heal & help them with physical, mental, spiritual and emotional benefits.” Elena Lamaak, MA, LMHC explains. Experiment with the type and brands of drawing or writing supplies that you are most comfortable with.

Children who use art therapy mostly like to have jumbo crayons with an extensive color range, clays, markers, and lots of bond papers. Nowadays, coloring books are popular among adults. All they have to buy are their choice of coloring book and a set of crayons or coloring pencils.

Wet Supplies

If you are more into painting, then acrylic paints and watercolor sets are mostly in your list. Most art stores have different brands of wet supplies depending on their prices and types. Mostly, they would also offer beginner sets or kits complete with different brushes and mixing stuff. There are also washable painting kits which are suitable for children.

Bags Or Kits For Your Supplies

Do not let missing crayons or pieces of your art materials add to your stress and anxiety. More often than not, patients grow fond of their art supplies instead of their therapist-provided stuff. It would be better if you have your bag or briefcase for your materials. Check the stores for a carry-bag that would fit all your stuff. It would be much better if they have their designated pockets.

Repository Of Your Artworks


Your artworks are not for nothing. After you have done a piece, put them properly in a frame or a bag. Preserve them because they are the window to your emotions. Your art therapist will surely base their assessment on your works.

“It’s important to underscore here the importance of monitoring your mental health and knowing how different medications and lifestyle changes can impact your mental health,” says Julia Hogan, LCPC. Enlisting the help of an art therapist will help boost your confidence and treat any underlying mental health illness you may have. Art therapists know the fundamentals and theories of this technique. They will provide activities and techniques designed just for you after you tell them your concerns, problems, and mental health condition. Before you even know it, your mental health has become better through this therapy.

“Therapy doesn’t have to be talk-based; there are some modalities, like music therapy and art therapy, that can help you get those in tune with those emotions without having to cough them up verbally.” Hannah Goodman, LMHC

This entry was posted in Arts.

How Watching Films Can Be Therapeutic


Even with their creative minds, moviemakers have their fair share of struggles and problems. Most of the time, it results in films that relay their genuine emotions. Consequently, you find these movies as a haven because it enables you to express the feelings you have found difficult to express and release.

Films provoke different kinds of emotions. Some can make you sad, happy, thrilled, or upset. According to Birgit Wolz, a psychotherapist who also facilitates the Cinema Therapy group, watching movies can help heal and provide growth to anybody who seeks emotional release, relief, and natural change. Birgit Wolz, PhD., MFT said “Cinema therapy can be a powerful catalyst for healing and growth for anybody who is open to learning how movies affect us and to watching certain films with conscious awareness. Cinema therapy allows us to use the effect of imagery, plot, music, etc. in films on our psyche for insight, inspiration, emotional release or relief and natural change.”

Benefits Of Watching Films

1. Catharsis

If you have been having a hard time letting your tears out, a sad movie can help. As an alternative, it can also make you feel better once you realize the characters have more significant problems than you do. A triumphant film can be a mood booster after a challenging or tiring day. A scary movie can give you an adrenaline rush whenever you are feeling down.

A good movie, whatever genre it falls under, can help you release bottled-up emotions. Such as Dr. Mathias Clasen said “Exposure to horror films can be gratifying when the negative emotions caused by the film are manageable. Moreover, there’s psychological distance when we watch a horror film. We know it’s not real—or at least, some parts of our brain know it isn’t real. Other parts—ancient structures located in the limbic system—respond as though it were real.”

2. Escapism

People deal with problems all the time. For some, the world around them seems to be crumbling down. Watching a movie helps people immerse themselves in another world where things are not complicated. For two hours, they can enjoy without thinking about their problems.


Escapism can you help you in a lot of ways. But keep in mind that, ultimately, you will still have to fix your problems rather than escaping from it.

3. Distraction

Distraction goes hand in hand with escapism. Whenever a person feels depressed or anxious, one of the usual things they do is get away from their emotions. Watching a movie can help them do that. It helps them focus on other things which relax their minds even just for a while.

4. Inspiration

Movies are inspiring. You can learn a lot of morals and lessons in a film. It may sound a bit silly, but you would be surprised by how a movie can inspire and move you. Movies with great plots can help you find motivation, be a better person, or look at life with high hopes.

A biographical or historical movie often gives us a glimpse of how life can be for others. You get to look at life from a different perspective. “The difference in opinions are projections of our own perspectives. Some people may experience triggers pertaining to their lived experiences, while others may not. Some people may view the film as negatively depicting health disparities, while some may point to scenes that highlight positive portrayals.” Shainna Ali Ph.D., LMHC explains.

5. Creativity

There’s no doubt that the different views and aspects in life we see in movies can change our outlook in life.  A good story engages a person’s curiosity, emotions, and imagination, which makes us more creative and innovative.


At the same time, it makes us appreciate the art of making movies. It includes cinematography, production, and how the actors can convey emotions.

Inspirational Movies To Watch For Life Lessons And Mental Health Awareness

  • The Intern (2015)
  • Forrest Gump (1994)
  • The Bucket List (2007)
  • Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
  • Inside Out (2015)
  • Miracle in Cell No. 7 (2013)
  • Every Child is Special (2007)
  • Dead Poets Society (1989)
  • A Beautiful Mind (2001)
  • Good Will Hunting (1997)

No matter how you’re feeling right now, there’s a movie that can help you express it. We hope they inspire you to love and take care of yourself. Enjoy!

This entry was posted in Films.

Can’t Find Your Passion? Here’s A Therapist’s Advice

There is no doubt that you are one of the people who want to create something extraordinary with his life. And perhaps it is what your therapist would advise. With that, you find interest in different things around you. There is exploration, arts, and crafts, cooking, performing arts and theatre, movie production, writing, and so on. But what if you can’t seem to find your passion? What if you want to do something but don’t know where to start looking? Will you be able to decide in an instant what you want to do in life? Well, perhaps if you continue reading, you will have an idea of how a person can search and find his passion.

Don’t worry. Chris Corbett, PsyD says, “Many seek the advice of counsel as they pursue their own personal exploration and growth. Working with a therapist can help provide insight, support, and new strategies for all types of life challenges.”


The Ways Of Finding Your Passion

If you are an individual who doesn’t know what he wants to do and achieve in life, then you might be someone who doesn’t understand the worth of excitement. If you think that there is only one activity out there that tends to be for you, then you are wrong. The assumption that passion is somehow predetermined is a mentality that puts you in isolation. Because the truth is, that is not how it works. There are a lot of things that can potentially become your passion because of your ability to do more than one. However, you have to understand the things that are vital in determining it.

Changing Your Dopamine Source

Dopamine is the chemical that gets released in the brain. Its purpose is to motivate you to do things according to your preference and level of pleasure. When you understand its abundance, you will get to see a bigger picture of how you should look at things. Most of the times, you get a high level of dopamine by creating something. Let’s say you are writing, performing, drawing, etc. With that, you feel satisfied throughout the process. And by appreciating the kind of fulfillment you are having, you are entirely pushing yourself to become passionate about what you are doing. Jennifer L. Taitz, PsyD, LA-based clinical psychologist explains that “Activity scheduling entails creating a plan, say, Sunday night, for the week where you plot out times to be with people, take exercise classes, work on projects, etc. Often, people wait until a mood or motivation moves them. Rather than waiting for those tenuous experiences, I urge people to be proactive and follow their values. Don’t wait to feel better, but start to live better now.” But you have to be careful. Because nowadays, there are a lot of things that can flood your brain with dopamine. There is binge-watching, surfing on the internet, and spending too much time on social media. And having to do all this stuff can be too damaging at some point. Because instead of becoming a source of creation, it becomes a basis of brain chemical consumption. 

In an attempt to create a higher level of dopamine that will determine your passion, you need to understand the importance of the distinction. With that, you need to realize that for something to become worth doing, the level of dopamine must stem from creation. Because if you get your dopamine level from a form of consumption, it becomes an addiction. It eventually ends up as a mental condition. Therefore, the most significant thing you need to do to find your passion genuinely is to turn your off your dopamine consumption. These could be spending a lesser amount of time on social media, or set a lesser time watching TV, and anything that does not entirely help in creation.


Exposure To Variety Of Creations

“Intellectual wellness is when you recognize your unique talents to be creative and you seek out ways to use your knowledge and skills. When you foster your intellectual wellness, you participate in activities that cultivate mental growth.”  Marjie L. Roddick, MA, NCC, LMHC, said. So to allow yourself to get the right amount of dopamine that will support what you do, you have to expose yourself from the different types of creation. Yes, the hard part of it is finding what interests you most because there are a lot of things to choose from the list. Sometimes, you get to feel overloaded with ideas that, instead of pushing you, make you feel tired without even starting. So what you need to do is at least try things out. Don’t focus on one thing. You can search for a list of hobbies and create a list of activities that interests you the most. Then all you got to do check out the things you like to do most. But take note, you must give yourself enough time to process the activity. With that, you can see whether the hobby can somehow turn into a passion.


It may sound an overly simple idea, but finding a passion is not that entirely hard to do. The thing is, you need to understand the importance of toning and changing your dopamine level. That’s it. You need to allow yourself to try and explore a wide variety of creativity and cut down dopamine consumption.

This entry was posted in Films.

Psychologist-Approved Gifts For Your Artistic Daughter At Any Age Without Breaking The Bank



Mothers of different origins tend to become similar to each other on the days leading up to their daughter’s birthday, in the sense that they seem to need assistance from a psychologist during this time more than ever. The reason is not always because the birthday girl is begging for them to throw a huge party or she keeps on asking if she can already have a boyfriend. It may not either be because you are too busy at work, and you cannot take a leave of absence to be with your daughter on her special day.

If you think of moms in general (and you may be one too), you may realize that most of them want to get presents that are within a 100-dollar budget. This idea can apply not only for middle-class individuals but also for wealthy folks who don’t wish to spoil their kids with expensive gifts. After all, it will allow them to find great joy, even in little things.

Now, before you start looking through department stores or online shops, there is one thing that you have to consider: the age of your kid.



3 To 8 Years  Old

If your daughter is in the early childhood stage in which she likes everything girly, she may appreciate dolls, tea or kitchen sets, princess gowns, and pretty much anything else that is pink in color. You may find these as expensive gifts off the bat, but that will not be the case if only you know where to buy them.

13 To 17 Years Old

Some girls may or may not have foregone their idolatry for princesses when they become teenagers, but their passion for colors and bling only intensifies as they get older. “Early adolescents (ages 12-14), middle adolescents (ages 15-17), and late adolescents (ages 18-20) all have different needs from their caregivers based on where they are at developmentally.” says Sandi Lindgren PCC, LICSW. On your daughter’s birthday, therefore, you may want to consider buying long-chained necklaces, wooden or metal bangles or earrings of different designs that you can buy from some night markets at the lowest possible price. Aside from that, there are online stores that give significant discounts if you buy in bulk. I doubt if these knickknacks will even squeeze out more than $70 from your wallet when you buy from such places.



18 To 24 Years Old

“Learning parenting strategies before having children, or at least when they are little – not when your children are teenagers – is the truly effective option.” Richard Zwolinski, LMHC said. This is the time when you genuinely have to think about your gifts for the birthday girl because your baby is already a young adult. While I was surfing through the internet, I came across this online shop called Etsy that sells fabulous jewelry that ranges from new designs to vintage designs which can cost no more than 50 bucks. There are also other items, including shirts, mugs, mats, pins, pens, and even notebooks. The good thing about it is that you can have the trinkets engraved, stamped, or embossed with your daughter’s initials or actual name so you can give her a more personalized present.

25+ Years Old

Although being at the age of 25 or more still makes your daughter a young adult, it is no secret that your kid’s preferences may have already changed around this time. For that reason, you should pay attention to the things that she talks about whenever you are shopping together. It won’t hurt to stalk your baby girl’s Instagram account as well since the photos that she posts there will most likely give you an idea about the things she is into recently. At this point, your daughter may even appreciate gift cards to her favorite stores like Starbucks, Amazon, Audible, etc.

Alternatively, in case your child has recently been talking about her childhood days, you can surprise her with old items from the past. For instance, make the same birthday cake that she smashed on her 1st birthday. You may also look for an adult-sized version of her favorite clothing ensemble many years ago so that she can take a picture in it and compare the two photos.



Final Thoughts

“You know your children best. Doctors, teachers, therapists are all fantastic resources but if you don’t feel like you’re being heard, or your child’s needs are being met, it’s very reasonable to get a second opinion. Don’t be afraid to fight for your child and their needs. While the professionals are experts in their areas, you are the expert on your child.” Dr. Darla Clayton, PsyD said. Nobody can honestly tell that they find gift-buying for their kids a stress-free task. For one, you want to impress your daughter and make her yell, “I have the best momma in the world!” At the same time, you undoubtedly do not want all of her college funds to go to a single birthday present. Not only is that impractical, but it might make your daughter expect gifts that are too expensive from you every time.

If you want to give presents that will not break the bank and your child will most likely appreciate, follow the tips above. Good luck!

This entry was posted in Arts.

Art Therapy: Tips In Visiting Museums

Did you know that many people are starting to go for art therapy in resolving their personal conflicts? Nowadays, several troubled individuals resort to exploring the beauty of art in overcoming a severe mental disorder or battling against depression and anxiety. There are several ways on how this kind of therapy is m1ade. In this article, our primary focus would be about the act of visiting museums to calm your mind, renew your energy and overcome your struggles.




According to Hannah Goodman, LMHC “Therapy doesn’t have to be talk-based; there are some modalities, like music therapy and art therapy, that can help you get those in tune with those emotions without having to cough them up verbally.” Make sure to read this article for the smart tips to remember. Keep in mind that there are various rules to follow when it comes to visiting museums. You cannot just show up and expect other people to do the work for you. Here are some of the tips to keep in mind:


Set A Schedule First


The critical part of coming over to a museum is choosing the date for your actual visit. As much as possible, book ahead of time so that you will not experience any hassle in securing tickets. Another advantage of scheduling earlier is that you can have a longer time to research about the museum that you are visiting. Keep in mind that it is crucial to be aware of the essential details about the place before checking their art.




Choose A Companion


Checking paintings, sculptures and other forms of art is a beautiful experience, especially if you share it with someone who matters in your life. Hence, it is best if you will start to choose a companion whom you want to explore the museum with. “You know the ones—these are the people you know you can always call, text, or email when you need to feel a connection.” David Klow, a licensed therapist said. This person can be your partner, a close friend or a family member. Take note that that the choice is up to you. However, if you prefer to visit alone, you can also do it as long as you plan the itinerary ahead of time.


Research About The Place


As already mentioned above, it is best if you will search for the place first. Keep in mind that there are some rules and regulations that you have to observe if you want to have a great time in the museum. As such, you must find time to check out these guidelines ahead of time to ensure that you will not violate them on the date of actual visit. Remember that being prepared is one of the vital keys to having an unforgettable experience in the museum. Fortunately, it is now easy to look up for specific information about a place. All you must do is go online and search for the website of the museum or read the online reviews left by previous visitors.





Keep Your Phone Off


When checking out the collection in the art place, it is best if you can turn your phone off. Take note that you are not the only one who is checking the area. There is a high possibility that you can disturb the other persons who are also trying out art therapy to make them feel relaxed. At the same time, having your phone on as you course through the museum can be a great distraction on your part. To enjoy the benefits of art therapy, it is crucial for you to set your heart and mind to it. Never allow any distractions or interruptions.


Listen To The Tour Guide


If you get lucky, it is possible that you can explore the museum with a tour guide who is highly knowledgeable about the art available there. When you get this opportunity, be sure to enjoy it. Feel free to ask questions about the pieces of art that your life. However, do not forget to be courteous by waiting for the other person to stop speaking before you open your mouth. Also, be respectful enough to listen to her as she explains about the beautiful collection.




Art therapy is effective, and many people claim that it changed their life. “Art Therapy can help with emotional expression via non-verbal communication, because often unexpressed words and emotions are at the heart of symptoms and behaviors. Benefits can include increasing self-esteem, gaining self-awareness, improving communication, managing behavioral issues, solving problems creatively, reducing stress and anxiety, and developing social skills.” Elena Lamaak, MA, LMHC said. Our only wish for you is that you also get to experience it in the future. Remember that it is always a good idea to visit your therapist or psychiatrist before you try art therapy. Keep in mind that this form of treatment is not for everyone, which is why you must be careful in doing it. Enjoy art and may it help you heal.


This entry was posted in Films.

Addressing Anxiety And Depression Using Art Therapy

Depression and anxiety are the common mental illness that we all might experience. It is the conditions that we understand can eventually make our lives miserable. In some unfortunate events, it can even make us forget our purpose in life and entirely take control of our decisions and actions. So with all the negative things that depression and anxiety give to us, are we aware of the proper ways of handling them? Well, we all have our various methods of coping with any kinds of mental illnesses. As for me, I indulge myself with art. And with the help of art therapy, I can probably say I find it more exciting and comfortable to express how I feel.


People’s False Impression On Art

Art can bring a lot of confusions and different reactions to specific individuals. That’s because some of them are entirely not into making art and some are stuck in the idea that they are not creative or talented enough for it. It is also possible that others have a negative experience with art in the past. That explains why we know someone who hasn’t made a single art piece since their elementary days. Yes, there are also those people who do not get interested in arts because they think of it as a waste of time, invaluable habit, expensive, or something that doesn’t need attention. But I certainly assure that people will not need confidence or any artistic skills to try art therapy. There is no wrong way of making art, and I believe that anyone can participate in creating one. As Elena Lamaak, MA, LMHC explains it, “The art *process* itself is where the magic happens! It is not about making “good” art — this art is from the inside and it is not always going to look “pretty.”

We might not directly see art’s connection to our mental state. But for most of us, what we picture in our minds are not accurately the things that come out through our hands. There is a tendency that we are not capable of delivering our thoughts into a visual representation. But through art therapy, there is a room for an explanation on what we make and show in our art. It gets described as something more important rather than what we think it should look like or what it needs to be.


So Exactly What Is Art Therapy?

For clarification, art therapy is NOT an instructional art class. There’s no teaching someone how to make or create art. Its goal is entirely different. It’s not an activity that attempts to master a particular artistic skill. It helps in knowing different types of media and supplies though. Art therapy encourages people to experiment and play with art materials

Art therapy is a modality that caters mental health through creating art accompanied by professional counseling therapist. “Art therapy can help improve various mental and pysical symptoms including, but not limited to, reducing pain, anxiety, and tension. It can be beneficial to those who have mental disorders, severe or light emotional abuse, cancer, post traumatic stress disorders (PTSD), people who are bipolar, and a variety of other serious ailments.” Douglas Mitchell, LMFT said. The process intends to bring together spiritual, emotional, physical, and psychological care by offering creative ways. It allows patients to respond to their imagination and transfer it to visual representation. It is vital to understand that art therapy is a form of psychological treatment. Since art-making itself is therapeutic, it can transcend words, colors, and shape, into a voice or feeling that appear lost for words.


One thing that people can love about art therapy is its process of exploring a variety of issues that may come up with a particular mental illness. Since it proves to ease emotional pain and stress, it can release a different perception of experiences often stored in the non-verbal parts of our brain. So when we try to create art by focusing on stressful and painful events in our lives, it helps the brain in shifting its gears. From there, we get to process memories and stuck up thoughts at a deeper level of understanding. It makes us compare and view our self and our experiences differently rather than just talking about it. That’s because the “art” we are focusing on the therapy is not just about a compilation of creation and imagination. It is something that allows us to communicate with ourselves and others. It helps us express our thoughts through visual representation without the worry of not getting too realistic.

In art therapy, there’s no judging, criticizing or interpreting an artwork. Everything about it will base on how we look at the results from the visuals we make. So for me, it’s ideally a way to tell the world that I understand things around me.

This entry was posted in Films.

The Power Of Literature In Changing Views Of Mental Illness

We, our friends, and family read newspaper articles, short stories, and novels. We tend to devour these materials because we want to reach the last page. It is where we usually expect an end game to what we want to know from the beginning. That is why we read. Maybe because we know that the authors seem to try and send us a message or perhaps hoping that their writings can make a positive change because literature is one of the things that can move an audience through the evocation of significant emotions. And these emotions result in indirect actions on the part of us readers.

Many authors have written a lot of entire novels and short stories back in the days. Over the past hundred years, the writings hope to transform society’s perception about the harshness of mental illness as well as the treatment of a particular condition. Truthfully, these authors’ hardships are all worth it. That’s because we are now in a progressive state where we move human rights. That’s through the power of the authors’ narratives and educational literature, their insights of the characterization of mentally ill people, and their stance on patients and asylums maltreatment. Learn more about the writers’ and patients’ journey and condition through Betterhelp.


The Progression Of Mental Illness Over Time

In the old European years, mentally ill individuals are allowed to go free provided they are not dangerous to other lives. With this, these individuals receive less treatment as people see them as abnormal individuals. Sometimes, people assume them to be witches that are potentially able to be inhabited by demons. In the same year, the establishment of mental illness pushes Europeans to isolate those individuals with psychological problems. Mentally ill people are forced to stay in a house with disabled people, delinquents, and vagrants. As for those individuals that people consider insane, they suffer from inhumane treatment often kept in a dungeon and chained to walls. These are quite unfortunate for people who feel misunderstood.

A different approach to mentally ill people happened after the French revolution. That is when a few activists forbid patients mistreatment. From there, they went in against organizations and took over some asylums. Though some of them convinced others to create a different view on treating psychological conditions, the abuse continues in the majority of institutions. That’s the reason why in the late centuries, most state mental hospitals became custodial due to overcrowdedness.

“Reading, doing challenging puzzles such as crosswords or Sudoku, debating issues with others who have opposing viewpoints, learning a new language or musical instrument, trying a new hobby, or teaching and tutoring others are all ways to maintain or improve your intellectual wellness.” –Marjie L. Roddick, MA, NCC, LMHC

The Writings

10 Days In A Mad House (1887) – Nellie Bly, a New York reporter, posed as one of the mentally ill people and asked to enter an asylum and become an inmate. She hopes to see what’s inside the parameters of the mental hospital. Her curiosity made her discover hundreds of mistreatments and inappropriate things inside the asylum. So after the release of her novel, the city of New York came to realize the importance of rehabilitation and support. From there, the city appropriated more than a million dollar annually to provide care for the insane.


The Yellow Wallpaper (1892) – Originally written by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, this novel received high regard of becoming one of America’s early feminist literature. It illustrates the practices and attitudes of people in the 19th century towards women’s physical and mental health. The story in the novel depicts the narrator’s mental condition where it descent into psychosis. In the novel, she becomes obsessed with the color and pattern of the wallpaper. Gilman explained that the story in the book originated in her experience as a depressed patient. After realizing how close she is from having a mental breakdown, she wrote the novel with an illustrated exaggeration resulting from her misdiagnosis complaint. It became a battle of obsession and reality acceptance for her.

“Misinformation about mental illness shames and discriminates those suffering with depression from getting professional help.” –Deborah Serani, PsyD

The Bell Jar (1963) – Sylvia Plath, wrote an honest depiction of mental health issue through the life of a woman named Esther. The Bell Jar is an excellent representation of mountains of illnesses that descents people’s mind and impedes their capacity to live their lives fully. Though most readers see the terminologies in the novel leaves people clueless due to lack of understanding, the terms somehow become comparable to the American Psychological Associations Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. The APA DSM provides consistent terminology, but there are still unmentioned cases that receive misunderstanding. With this infancy of development, Esther never receives a specific diagnosis. As for Sylvia Plath, she also has a mental illness that pushed her to commit suicide. But even though she ended her life like that, her brilliance in literature proved the world that psychologically ill people deserve a second chance of living.


According to Dr. Mitch Keil, clinical psychologist “Mental health is complex, and it would be a lot easier if we were like cars.” Mental illness has been an issue for almost hundreds of years now, and only literature first started to picture it as something that we should care addressing. As innovation grows, the cases of these psychological conditions develop as well. If it had not been with the illustration of literature, there’s no way it would create a massive chance of exposure.

This entry was posted in Films.