Being crafty is fun, but did you know that it can also be beneficial to your health?

Dozens of studies have proven that making art can be favorable for your mental and physical health. Here are some of the benefits of being creative in your everyday life.

Reduces stress and anxiety
Being creatives reduces stress because it provides a distraction from everyday worries. Being focused on the task at hand, or being in the zone, puts one in a meditative state. In fact, this state brings many of the same benefits as meditation, such as lower blood pressure.

The poet T.S Eliot famously said, “Anxiety is the handmaiden of creativity.” For people suffering from anxiety, making art gives a sense of purpose and control because they are able to do something creative with their anxiety.

Improves mindfulness
Being creative greatly improves mindfulness, which means being fully present. This is key for mental health. Mindfulness also helps us to be more focused at work, at home, and in other areas of our lives.

Helps with brain connectivity
Do you want to age well? Being creative will help. Creating art helps with brain plasticity, which fosters connection between different parts of the brain.

But there’s more to it than that: being creative activates parts of your brain in new ways. It promotes neuron growth by producing brand-new neurons, which are essential for a healthy central nervous system.

Wards off Alzheimer’s disease
Again, those connections between different parts of the brain help because making art activates the medial temporal lobes, which take care of memory-making. And it’s not only in old age - creative habits in your twenties and thirties can really influence how you are going to age.

Writing by hand, or journaling, can also boost memory. In fact, writing things down helps in remembering them because there is a coordination between the verbal and fine movement systems. Because of this, typing on a device won’t have such a memory-boosting effect.

Fosters a better immune system
Being creative is not only good for mental health, it also does wonders for physical health! According to a 2015 study by the University of California in Berkeley, being exposed to art could help reduce levels of chemicals that cause inflammation which results in illnesses such as diabetes.

Helps with expressing yourself
Emotions are complicated, and sometimes we don’t know how to deal with them. Making art helps in expressing oneself in a safe yet freeing way, and identifying how we feel. Art can help people who go through trauma, grief, heartbreak and other difficult life experiences.

Makes you happy
Besides helping people get through difficult challenges, making art has the power to improve mood and emotional health. Think about how you feel when you sing a song, draw or dance? It makes you happy and allows you to play as an adult!

Physical arts (like dance) help keep you in shape
Dance and theatre are a great way to get in shape while being creative. It’s a win-win!