Painting is a commonly used creative outlet for struggling addicts
Creativity is a powerful outlet in the field of addiction treatment and recovery. Engaging in creative activities can help you accept your addiction, have more success during treatment and stay clean during life in recovery.
Creative Therapies Used in Addiction Treatment
There are many different types of creative outlets that are beneficial to processing an addiction and coming to terms with the need to seek out help. Creativity is so beneficial to struggling addicts that many professional rehab facilities utilize art therapy to help the addicts find more success in overcoming an addiction.
Some of the most commonly used creative outlets that are known to help struggling addicts can include the following:
- Writing poetry, song lyrics or simply journaling
- Performing a play
- Making music
- Writing stories
Anything that utilizes the creative part of the brain can be considered a creative outlet and will likely benefit in coming to terms with an addiction. Creativity helps in this way because it activates the creative areas of the brain and brings out underlying or hidden emotions that the person may not even be aware of.
Negative emotions are often what cause people to begin abusing a substance in the first place and when addiction sets in these painful feelings can stand in the way of recovery. Creativity allows the underlying emotions to come out and even helps the addict to gain a feeling of control over them. Addiction is a physical disease but it also has unseen emotional baggage that needs to be addressed. In many cases, addicts may not even understand themselves how to accurately express their emotions, which can hinder them from accepting the problem and seeking treatment.
Creative expression through art or some other form of creativity can help struggling addicts to express their emotions through a tangible painting or poem. This is beneficial because many addicts are unable to accurately describe through spoken word what they’re feeling. Trained art therapists can help addicts interpret their creative expression into the emotions and feelings they are depicting.
An addict may be struggling with the fact that he has an addiction and traditional therapy may not be helping him to reach recovery. But when a creative outlet is used, the addict can freely express himself and begin to understand his need to recover, while also helping the therapist to determine the treatment needs of the addict. Once a rehab program has been completed and recovery is reached, creativity can also benefit long-term recovery by being a healthier outlet for emotional expression.