The arts can make your kids smarter; they can make you stronger, and they can put money in your pocket, but they’re not done yet—they can also make you feel better too.
Research from the University of Western Australia suggests that exposure to the arts for just two hours every week can drastically improve your mental health and overall well-being. It can be active exposure, like painting a picture, or passive exposure, like strolling through a gallery or museum.
The National Endowment for the Arts recently released research from the University of Michigan, which notes that: “Older adults who both created art and attended arts events reported higher cognitive functioning and lower rates of both hypertension and limitations to their physical functioning than did adults who neither created nor attended art.”
Further, as early as Preschool, being exposed to creative arts programs improves social skills, decreasing behaviors such as withdrawal, social anxiety, and aggression. Involvement in the arts is also associated with increased self-efficacy, belief in one’s own ability to succeed in specific situations or accomplish a task and self-esteem confidence in one’s own worth.