Some people turn to writing as a means of expressing how they’re feeling or thinking, or what their voices are feeling or conveying. This might involve writing a diary or journal, letters (to themselves, other people or their voices), fiction, poetry, articles or blogs.
It’s not just writing – there’s also arts and crafts, such as drawing, painting, sculpting, collaging, model making, photography, pottery, sewing or knitting, and lots more. Arts and crafts can be used to express what the voices look like, say, feel or think, or the thoughts, feelings, ideas or sensations that they bring up. Sometimes shape, light, colour, tone, composition or texture can communicate more than words.
You can find out more about the different ways in which voice-hearers have used creative practices to help them cope with or explore their voices here.
CREATIVITY IN ACTION: Listen Up!
During the summer of 2016, nine young people who hear voices took part in a series of arts workshops in Bradford, Leeds and Durham. With the support of Rai Waddingham (a voice-hearer and facilitator) and Mary Robson (Creative Facilitator, Hearing the Voice), they came together to share experiences, challenge stigma and create artwork for the exhibition that sends a positive message to other young voice-hearers. Learn more about the Listen Up! project here.
At times when the voices were at their worst, I usually tended to draw or paint. Or I tried to put into my drawings what they may look like.
At times when voices were at their worst, I usually tend to draw/paint or try to put into my drawings what they may look like (I also get visual Hallucinations which tend to be more distressing than the voices) or distract myself by playing the piano if that didn’t work.
I found doodling useful just let the voices vent and doodle away on a piece of paper.
My voice likes smashing eggs. I/we throw them into the bath!
Writing about my experiences has been a powerful way to process and reflect
I find that sometimes drawing or painting really expressive gestural stuff is good, just making marks that feel right for how I’m feeling or responding to my voices is really soothing. I also sew a lot and find that is quite meditative and is a good way of expressing myself too. My voices calm down a lot when I am hand sewing and I find that it is just another way of mark making and getting my emotions (and theirs) out.
Use my art therapy diary and draw… Drawing helps me focus on the drawing and not listening to voices.