The season around Valentine’s Day can seem hyper-focused on relationships with others, and, typically, romantic ones. However, the most important relationship you should prioritize this year is with yourself. Creating art can be a powerful way to reconnect with yourself, love yourself despite your flaws, and work through challenging emotions.
Why Be Your Own Valentine?
Everywhere you look this month, you’re probably inundated with relationships. From stores and restaurants pushing pricey Valentine’s gifts, to picture-perfect posts on social media, it can be hard to escape.
This year, consider foregoing the traditional approach to Valentine’s Day, and instead focusing on yourself. After all, your relationship with yourself is undoubtedly the longest — and most important — you’ll ever have.
Take this opportunity to write yourself a few valentines. Don’t be afraid to get cheesy and highlight your best qualities! Why wait to get one from someone else when you can make yourself the card you always wanted to receive?
Just as words of affirmation can be helpful reminders of the best things about you, consider making yourself a few valentine's cards this year. Put them up on your mirror, in your car, or in other spots you spend a lot of time. You’ll be reminded of a few reasons you’re so great whenever you come across them.
How Can Art Deepen Your Relationship with Yourself?
Sometimes it can be challenging to acknowledge that you can make mistakes or be inherently flawed and still be worthy of love.
When you’re creating art with, and for yourself, you can make mistakes and not worry about the end product. Instead, you can focus that energy on the journey of creating. This is a fantastic opportunity to practice loving yourself, regardless of any flaws you may have.
Spending time alone can often be tedious — with so much media at our disposal, it’s easier to put on a movie, dive into a book, or fall into an endless social media scrolling session. Creating art is a great way to keep yourself engaged and entertained, without relying on external distractions.
How Can Art Help You Process Your Emotions?
Today, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by external stimuli — there are so many ways you can distract yourself, often with your phone or social media.
Often, sitting in silence thinking about how you feel and why you feel that way can be very challenging. Creating art is a beautiful way to connect with your emotions and work through them.
In fact, spending time making art has been shown to reduce cortisol levels (the primary stress hormone) in creators of all skill levels. Similarly, a 45-minute art practice has been shown to increase levels of self-confidence in adults.
Perhaps most notably, free art practice is a proven therapy tool. Often, talking about or working through difficult emotions can be challenging. Art provides an outlet for acknowledging and moving past those feelings.
If you’re a journaler, you may consider creating a mood tracker to take note of your emotions each day. You can select specific colors or patterns to represent each feeling. Then, each day you fill in a pixel or element of your pattern with the main emotion you felt that day. Mood trackers don’t have to be boring — in fact, this can be an art practice in its own right.
Check out this interactive tracker with pendants for each day. Notice how it doesn’t include every single day of the month, and the creator has added extra notes to keep track of what else is going on in their life that day.
Fall in Love with Yourself Through Art This Year
Just like a healthy romantic relationship only thrives with attention and focus all year long, don’t limit your self-love to February. Schedule regular “dates” with yourself where you spend time creating art and getting in touch with your feelings.
You can practice creating art in many ways — you don’t need to be a world-renowned oil painter to benefit from a creative practice. Beneficial art activities include (but aren’t limited to):
We founded Brush Box to support healing through art because we believe everyone is creative and taking time to channel that creativity can be transformative. We’d love to see all of the creative projects you’re working on, so tag us on Instagram (@abrushbox) and we’ll check out your latest creations. Be sure to also sign up for our newsletter to get exclusive deals and find out about our latest drops and upcoming events.