El Sol Healing Retreat center
Let go, find yourself, express yourself!
Learning to express oneself with creative expression honestly through art, dance, music, and/or writing can be a potent form of healing. These various creative outlets are especially useful in helping to let go of things that no longer serve us. The initial stages of healing can bring up painful emotions and thoughts so overwhelming they can seem impossible to deal with. Some people may come from backgrounds, cultures or family situations where expressing such feelings is frowned upon or considered a sign of weakness. Negative emotions in particular can become incredibly damaging without an outlet, and creatively expressing these feelings is an ideal way to release these energies so they don’t build up and, like a pressurized bottle, explode and manifest in damaging and unhealthy ways.
Creative expression can help begin or continue the process of letting go of the patterns or events that created these negative energies. For example, people recovering from addiction might find that painting is a better way to express the overwhelming emotions associated with recovery. Victims of physical abuse might find that a form of dance helps them to release pain from the abuse that is still trapped in their bodies. Journaling or writing poetry might be the best option for those people looking to express themselves through words. Think of all the great songs that have been written by people trying to let go of pain from the past!
There are already various established therapeutic approaches and global societies for each of these modalities, including Music Therapy, Dance Movement Therapy, Art Therapy, Drama Therapy, and Poetry Therapy.
Beyond helping with the ‘difficult’ emotions, these forms of creative expression can also be an effective tool for helping people express the positive emotions they experience as they begin to make progress in their healing. After having a significant breakthrough and feeling the positive shifts start taking place, one might be overcome with joy. Here too they might find that making music or bold colors on a canvas is a better way to express that joy if words are just not enough. Part of the healing process is painful, and this is to be honored and respected. However, parts of the process are also enjoyable, exciting, and vibrant. It is important to bring these positive aspects to life. Not only is this process a fulfilling one, but it can help to give a sense of permanence to these positive emotions which can, at times during the process, seem fleeting. Guests might also find that once they begin this process, they will begin to see the beauty and find inspiration in things they had previously never noticed. Suddenly all of nature seems worth writing about. Or a crumpled sock on the floor is worth painting. This all comes back to the idea of the fullness of life. Starting the process of creative expression can help people to find meaning in things they had previously ignored which adds greatly to the depth of one’s life experience.