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The benefits of creativity to mental health

Discussion in 'Personal' started by lanokia, Oct 20, 2019.

  1. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I just made a cake... spent a lot of today on that.

    Really chuffed with it.

    Thing is... I haven't done anything creative in ages and I feel so good for doing it. I don't get to be creative at work anymore [standardised centralised lessons on powerpoint delivered at set times] so the release of just being creative, mixing, timing, tasting... erm yeah that last one... mmmm...

    It reminded me of coffeekid's thread about hobbies... I think a creative outlet is vital to some, many [if not all] people in maintaining good mental health.

    Your thoughts?
    Norsemaid, bevdex, chelsea2 and 7 others like this.
  2. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    Photo please? (It'll get you more likes even than a cute kitten picture)
    Quick, before you snaffle it
    knitone and lanokia like this.
  3. Kandahar

    Kandahar Star commenter

    Absolutely - even digging a hole and removing stones, mending a bicycle puncture, fixing a leaking guttter. Worth more than winning the lottery I do believe! Did the cake taste good too (as well as the mixture)?
    nomad and lanokia like this.
  4. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    I agree. Cooking is definitely my creative outlet. It's a bit of freedom, can play around with ideas, not a huge consuming project that can be daunting. And I can cook so it's usually not bad at the end of it. But I do see that knitting, crochet, photography etc etc is just as beneficial for others.
  5. Aquamarina1234

    Aquamarina1234 Star commenter

    I made a cake and a poached salmon for GD's birthday tea. I found it all very stressful, fretting over whether it would all turn out OK.
    nomad likes this.
  6. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter


    Not the most decorative cake ever... but the hazelnuts are from our own garden and roasted freshly yesterday.
    knitone, Norsemaid, Shedman and 16 others like this.
  7. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I find gardening productive for my mental health as well... not eaten any yet [though I have eaten quite a bit of cake mixture yes :oops:]
    Kandahar likes this.
  8. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    That definitely adds a level of satisfaction to the process.

    It does look good!
    lanokia likes this.
  9. Lalad

    Lalad Star commenter

    It looks yummy - is that chocolate or ginger sponge with coffee icing @lanokia ?
    lanokia and nomad like this.
  10. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    That is very cool having your own grown hazelnuts. Looks delicious. I've been eating hotel food all weekend and some lovely homemade cake would be similar much nicer.
    lanokia and nomad like this.
  11. Duke of York

    Duke of York Star commenter

    A BBC series I've been enjoying over the weekend is this one: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p07lxl0v/episodes/player?page=1

    It looks at how art, technology and science have so many links. The things that science and technology enabled scientists to do and the things that artists did that inspired advances in science and technology.

    As an example of how they are intractibly bound together, just consider photography. Science enabled it, technology made it usable, but it's unlikely that either science or technolology would have made as much use of photography as it did, if artists hadn't wanted to push the boundaries of what was possible with photography to make it a viable technology.

    As a different example, consider the impact that a residue accidentally discovered from converting coal into gas, resulted in the production of a dye colour, previously unavailable to the textile industry transformed how the textiles we are now familiar with became as elaborate as they now are.

    I was particularly satisfied in listening to that particular episode, since it described how the term mauve came about. One of my school teachers lectured us that there is no such colour as mauve, there is only purple, yet unless a process had been invented to produce a colour which was marketed as mauve to appeal to the French and it hadn't been successful, you'd be unlikely to be able to buy a purple frock.

    As I've learned so frequently as I aged, my teachers struggled to discern excrement from clay in what they taught us.
  12. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    Ginger sponge with coffee icing. And home roasted hazelnuts
    BertieBassett2, Lalad and primarycat like this.
  13. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    We've lived here for 5 years... it's the neighbours tree but it grows over our garden... and in all that time I've never thought to harvest the nuts! Doh!!!

    I spent 90 mins cracking them yesterday... so delicious freshly roasted.
    bonxie, BertieBassett2 and sbkrobson like this.
  14. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    When can I come round to have a slice?
  15. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    You can do them in 90 seconds-place on a flat baking sheet in a single layer,cover in paper and go over with a rolling pin and some measured heft; too little,and you will need to go over multiple times, too much and you risk crushing your nuts beyond desirability . Chuck the whole mess in water, scoop off the floating broken shell with a slotted spoon and then place your freshly exposed nuts on a clean tea towel to dry. This way you can feel blithely freed up to get to that marking which the cake-making so annoyingly obstructed.
    I have thoughtfully italicised for the benefit of our resident fnarkster crew, should they feel excluded from this thread for having no other creative hobby.
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2019
  16. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Congratulations on making your delicious looking cake, Lanokia!

    Cooking is also my own most creative outlet, but whether it be painting or poetry or DIY or dressmaking or whatever, there is undeniably a great deal of satisfaction to be derived from such things. Even far more mundane things as well. I replaced the heating element in our tumble dryer last week, which as well as gaining me many brownie points with my wife, made me feel disproportionately euphoric!

    I also think though, that a part of it is occupying the mind entirely with something enjoyable and diverting, particularly if trying something new (be that simply a new recipe or knitting pattern, or an entirely new hobby altogether). The word 'mindfulness' is a little overused, whether as a panacea for all modern ills, or just to sell colouring books to adults, but there is a lot to be said for regularly doing something that is not one's work, that fully occupies the brain in a gentle way, requiring you to be 'in the moment', and that doesn't involve looking at a screen or worrying about the state of the world.

    Essentially meditation, but with a tasty cake to eat afterwards. Nothing anyone could possibly find wrong with that, eh?!
  17. BertieBassett2

    BertieBassett2 Star commenter

    Well, I think you should bake another and bring it to the next TES meet that you can attend!
  18. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    That sounds a much faster method.
  19. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I tried meditation but I have a bad hip muscle and can't sit comfortably on the floor. Quite enjoyed it but sitting was difficult.

    I read about outdoors meditation. Want to try that.
    primarycat and nick909 like this.
  20. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    My dad (6 foot 4 and not small of build) tried standing on his head as part of his meditation. Took him ages to work out why his neck really hurt for a few days after...
    susanrk, lanokia and nick909 like this.

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