How Self Expression Can Improve Your Mental Health
“Self-expression has improved my mental health because in every way that I’m afraid to be myself in the real world, my creativity allows me to bring the truest form of myself to the table.”
We brought together three creators from the Society of Valued Minds who know how both self-expression and having a community of people who “get it” made all the difference in their experience with mental health.
Learn more at societyofvaluedminds.org.
Don’t be afraid to lean into your creativity. It’s not going to look the same as everybody else’s. And it might not be for everybody else. But what has been most impactful for me is knowing that I am able to create something that my mind made up. And it feels authentic to me, and I think that’s what helps me be the creator that I am.
is a powerful tool
that I use to take care of my mental health.
Title card question: How Has Self-Expression Improved Your Mental Health?
I’m Ari, I’m a poet and author and a mental health advocate.
I’m Sravya Attaluri, and I use art and content creation for my self-expression.
My name is Blake Silva and I dive into the world of digital content creation. I’m a photographer, graphic designer and lover of pop culture.
Text on screen: Having a supportive community around you can make a difference in your mental health expression.
The Society of Valued Minds is bringing together creators like Ari, Sravya, and Blake to share their experiences and spread the idea that self-expression and community can improve mental health for the better.
Self-expression has improved my mental health by allowing me to name the feelings that I’m having. It’s really been beneficial for me to be able to write down these big emotions and translate them into things that are normal that we feel in our everyday lives instead of having them live trapped inside of my chest. Really a powerful way for me to express how I’m feeling within the confines of a page or my journal, or whatever it may be. In allowing myself the creativity, to name these emotions, and really talk about them, it has been a really helpful tool in my recovery process.
Self-expression has helped my mental health by allowing me to understand my emotions better and help me become more confident. For me self-expression has been different forms of art, whether that’s illustration painting, or even photography. I initially started painting and drawing whenever I was feeling low. And throughout the years, I started to understand my emotions through the shapes I was painting, the colors I was taking and the themes that came up. And it was magical, because I really connected with a whole group of people and feel a lot more confident in loving myself that way. And I want to continue expressing myself through art.
Self-expression has improved my mental health, because in every way that I’m afraid to be myself in the real world, my creativity allows me to bring the truest form of myself to the table. I am a person that has always naturally struggled with anxiety. And a lot of that comes from a place of, you know, not feeling completely safe in my skin, I’m a queer person as well. So in that way, self-expression allows me a safe haven where I can go to create something that is 100% me that I can bring myself authentically into whether it’s photography or graphic design, or just simply creating content on my social channels, when you feel the freedom and the peace that comes with being yourself is truly where there’s an unlock. And I think self-expression, especially in a creative format is so good for that.
Communities like the Society of Valued Minds have really helped my self-expression and my mental health by connecting me to other people who I may not have had the opportunity to connect with before. I think we all have things in common when it comes to processing and dealing with our mental health. And communities like these are really valuable in that they are able to bring us together under a common love and interest that is art and self-expression.
Having a community like Society of Valued Minds has connected me to other people who are also working on the same thing, which helped me a lot with my confidence because sometimes you can feel like you’re all alone in this fight, or no one else is listening. And by having a community it has really empowered me to use my art to connect with others and advocate for mental health.
Having communities like the community I have with Society of Valued Minds has positively impacted my relationship with self-expression and my understanding of the power of my mind and harnessing mental health for good, because it helps you feel like you’re not by yourself. You not only feel more understood, but you are helping someone else feel understood as well. I feel that creative expression is a gateway to just being able to escape from those things that trouble you. Utilize the power of your mind. And also just take a break sometimes.
Don’t be afraid to really trust your intuition and trust what your body and what your mind wants to create. It can be hard, but it is the most authentic when you are honest and true to yourself.
I think it’s important to remember that self-expression does not have to be a big gesture. You can start small and be consistent and you’ll surprise yourself on how much you can grow and learn from your form of self-expression.
When it comes to harnessing your mental health and bettering your mental health through self-expression and creativity, my best advice is to just not worry about what people are doing around you. It’s so much easier said than done, but I promise you, you will experience more joy and more fulfillment in your craft when you just focus on creating something that makes you feel good. I encourage you to lean into whatever sense of creativity you feel guides you and you’ll be surprised at how it improves up here.
End card text: This content is sponsored by Society of Valued Minds, a community using self-expression to live boldly with mental health conditions.
SoVM is a community sharing their creativity and lived experiences, empowering mental health leaders to realize their missions, and mobilizing advocates to spark change.
Join the movement on Instagram and TikTok @societyofvaluedminds.
Society of Valued Minds is brought to you by Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc.