Creativity gets a boost as the new 10th dimension of well-being

Thursday, April 7, 2022 Creativity gets a boost as the new 10th dimension of well-being

Students paint canvases at Art Night at the Sheldon event in 2021.

written by Kirsten Wandrey | Student Affairs

Based on student survey data, Big Red Resilience and Well-being will soon add a new dimension for well-being – creativity. This tenth dimension of well-being expands upon the current nine implemented in 2018 and will increase opportunities for students to de-stress in healthy ways.

According to Constance Boehm, director of student resilience, research shows that engaging in creativity can boost mental health and increase positive emotions. The idea to add a new dimension of well-being took root after a student survey where students expressed that most common methods of reducing stress during the pandemic were through creative outlets like painting, journaling or listening to music. While Big Red Resilience and Well-being (BRRWB) was already using creativity in certain aspects of their work, such as through partnership programming with the Hixon-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts, they wanted to further develop that creative emphasis moving forward.

Although creativity could be seen as a subcategory within other dimensions of well-being, BRRWB decided to split creativity into its own category because of how much it contributes to balancing the nine other elements.

Similar to exercising for your physical well-being, implementing a creative practice like painting, writing or cooking in your daily life can help maintain emotional and intellectual well-being.

To help celebrate the new creative dimension, BRRWB is calling for submissions for a campus-wide zine where students can submit visual art, writing, and other printable works that showcase how they express themselves through creativity.

Boehm says BRRWB plans to expand current partnerships with Hixon-Lied and the Sheldon Museum of Art, among others, to provide de-stressing opportunities for students.

"We plan to host regular creative activities, provide tips and resources for how to implement creativity, and promote campus and local events that surround creative well-being to help students embrace this new element."

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