The Expressive Arts Experience - Yvette Lyons, Ph.D., Expressive Arts Therapist
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Self Gift Bad Art Project

Most of us spend much to little time giving appreciation to ourselves.  We hurry through our days from one project or responsibility to another.  How many times have you just STOPPED!!! and spent some time creating and appreciating you as a creative wonderful being?

Here is a fun project that you can do that does not take much time but really helps you focus on things that you appreciate about yourself.  When you appreciate you and value YOU.... then other's will do the same.

Materials:

Paper bag
Magazines or Magazine cuttings
Glue
Ribbons, beads, bows, yarn feathers, glitter & jewels
Any natural items that you favor (shells, stones, wood items)
Filling for your appreciation bag (chocolate perhaps???, a movie ticket, a permission slip to get some R&R, be creative)

Process:

* Sit quietly for a few minutes.  
* Put on your favorite music and just sit with ourself and appreciate all that you are and       all that you do. 
* IF THAT INNER CRITIC COMES AROUND ~~ IMMEDIATELY SEND HER/HIM ON THEIR WAY!  No place for that inner critic in this exercise!
* Once you are ready and are feeling good inside, then adorn your bag with whatever emerges for you.  Do not censor this exercise.  Do not THINK too much about what you are doing... and PLEASE.... remember DO NOT FOCUS ON THE PRODUCT.  This is not about being an artist and making a 'pretty' piece of art.  This and all art therapy exercises are about drawing your inner wonder and magic out from inside you.  So allow the images and the color to flow without worrying about what your art will look like.

* When you are finished adorning the bad outside (and inside as well if you choose to), then give yourself a gift inside the bag.  Sit it aside somewhere you can see it for a day or so.  Allow your Self gift bag to be a reminder of how wonderful you are.



ENJOY!  And keep creating!

Yvette


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