Hanaa F. Al-Wardi

Multimedia Studio Artist





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Introduction

Let's face it: everybody is under some kind of stress, whether it is bad stress or good stress. Bad stress is very harmful if you don't control it and modify its destructive negative energy. Bad stress can harm your physical and mental health. Good stresses are actually your passion and drive to do certain things that you love. When you do something you love, you are actually benefitting your health. Many studies reveal that the people who love that they do usually improve their mental strength and cognitive ability in their later years and they look more youthful and live much longer.

Your passion to do the things you love is a gift, so guard it and cherish every moment while doing it. Not many people are privileged and blessed to be in this situation. There is nothing better than doing something you love. It is very energizing and exciting.

Paint Your Stress Away is my first book. It is a toolkit for life, offering many tips on how to incorporate art into your daily life to reduce stress, reduce pain, and uplift your soul and body. Art therapy can be used by everyone. You do not have to be a professional artist to reap its benefits.

As I researched the connection between art and health, I began to connect memories, personal stories and life experiences. The more I wrote about the art/mind/body connection, the more ideas started forming. This book was born of a truly amazing process of self-reflection and research and has opened the floodgates of my knowledge and my real life experiences as an artist.

I am a full time artist and a full time manager of my husband's neurology clinic. I feel that I am in a very unique position between my two worlds. At the clinic patients seek treatment for a wide variety of serious illness from strokes to brain tumors, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's. A majority of patients seek treatment for migraines, tensions headaches, anxiety and panic attacks, muscle tension, depression, ADHD, fibromyalgia and all other kinds of chronic aches and pains.

Usually, the patients check in with me before consulting with the doctor. I hear about their problems. stories of their stress and tense environments. and past traumatic experiences. My observation is that most patients experience high levels of bad stress. Stress comes in so many forms, including high pressure jobs, a demanding boss, an abusive spouse, children, long commutes, trauma, tests, illness, and so much more.

My career as a multimedia studio artist allows me to observe patients at the clinic through the lens of my art. As an artist, I am very visual and descriptive and appreciate all the details and the little things in life. I deal with a wide variety of mediums when I decide to create art. I keep my mind open to all possibilities and options. The sky is the limit when I create. I do not put obstacles or boundaries in my way. The ideas, materials, solutions and the stories I use are variable and endless,. One story leads to another and goes on and on.

My experience in writing this book has led me to believe that I have so much to offer through a combination of artistic creation, inspiration, problem solving, and stress reduction. Art therapy combines all of this.

I hope you, the reader, will benefit from the approaches, methods, media and suggestions described as art therapy in this book. I hope that this book will give you the knowledge and tools to alleviate your stress and improve other various illnesses and conditions. Take your time to read and fully absorb the information in the book. Check out the resources and web links and reap the full benefit of art therapy. Relax and enjoy!

 

Hanaa F. Al-Wardi

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