Posted in art and healing, creativity and health

What Would We Do Without Crayola?

Welcome to Art and Healing Wednesday!!

I needed to get some office supplies yesterday and ran over to OfficeMax to pick them up.  I got the flip chart paper I needed (love that Post-It flip chart) and was browsing through the store.  One of the store associates asked me if I needed any assistance and I politely declined.  I explained that office supply/stationary stores are like a playground for me…she readily agreed.

I came upon the aisle that had supplies for scrapbooking, and then I saw it; the part of the aisle devoted to Crayola products.  It’s amazing to me how this company that is the leader in crayons, has expanded creating new ways for us  to express ourselves so we can continue telling our story.

It’s a company like Crayola that allows each of us to tap into our creative side.  I want you to notice that I specifically said “creative” side and not “artistic” side.  It seems that when I use the word “artistic” I get a lot of push-back from people saying they aren’t artists, but we can all claim creativity.

When we spend time with our creative selves we release good hormones into our system allowing the body to work more effectively and efficiently.  There’s a saying, “Approach this experience as a child might approach a mud puddle.”  It’s not about getting your work in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, but creating a no guilt, no judgment, and no rules zone in your life.

That’s what a company like Crayola provides us, the raw materials to tell our story any way we want to tell it.  I know I sound like an ad for Crayola, but I’m using them as an example because their products are available everywhere.  They aren’t specialty products that can only be bought in an art supply store like Dick Blick.  Accessibility and ease of use eliminates one more hurdle to entering your creative zone.

So what did I buy?  I bought a new set of markers.  I like to doodle in my notebooks, on scratch paper, and pretty much on anything else I can get my hands on.  I can take a couple of minutes to doodle and during that time there’s no pressure, no expectations, and freedom that comes from blocking out the world and allowing my mind and hand to join together to play.

How much have you been playing since you’ve been diagnosed with a chronic or other life-altering illness?  This is a  non-threatening, no rules opportunity to play like a kid.  One of the things I’ve learned about children is that they are very resilient.  Wouldn’t you like to explore your own resiliency as you work toward getting better or getting well?  I know I do.

I’d love to see some of your creations…send me an email, I’d love to see your visual story.  Thanks for taking me on this journey with you.


I've lived my life in service to others. I'm focused on mental health and how it impacts our relationships, culture, and society. Through creative expression and narrative I believe we can impact change.

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