Wordsworth describes poetry as the “spontaneous overflow of powerful feeling”. Writing is often seen as a great form of therapy, releasing thoughts and feelings from the body, through the hands and into the world. You may or may not be aware of what perturbs you, but creative action with your hands, mind and body can turn undermining forces into usable energies and function as a natural anti-depressant.

We live in a technologically saturated culture, where we can walk into a shop and buy everything we need. Food to sustain us (or to fatten us), clothes to keep us warm (or to make us look cool) and news, education and entertainment to keep us busy (or distract us from smelling the roses). Heck, we can even buy the roses online and have them delivered, never even getting a faint whiff of them!

What we lose from all of this is the process. We never fully understand where that food is grown or how it makes its way to that neat, plastic wrapping in the fridge. Or where our clothes are made, and the price our disposable culture has on the planet. We can switch on our phone and Google has the answer instantly at our fingertips.

When you create, you are fully involved in the process. You begin with a basic need, like a chair or set of shelves. You formulate a design, translate it to a plan, and then gather the necessary tools and materials to make it become a reality.

Process is important for happiness because when we make, repair or create things, we feel vital and effective. Research has shown that hand activity from drawing; to sewing to making a terrarium can decrease stress, relieve anxiety and modify depression.

At Work-Shop, we are committed to putting you back in touch with the process and allowing you to walk away with that sense of pride that only creating can give.


Author: Matt Branagan