Art Directives for New Year's Resolutions | Creativity in Therapy

Are you making any new year resolutions, intentions, or goals? Art and creativity are a great way to deepen your exploration and commitment to these intentions or goals.

Art-making about your goals or an intention is helpful for a few reasons:

  • Encourages you to spend more time thinking about the resolution as you work on the art
  • The art process can make the resolution feel more concrete
  • Art-making allows you to explore your motivation, emotions, and thoughts around the resolution
  • The final art piece can serve as a tangible reminder of your commitment throughout the year

So whether you are a therapist with your own resolutions or need some ideas for how to help clients explore goals, resolutions, intentions, or commitments, consider making art a part of this process.

For the past few years, I have been trying something a little different every year when it comes to new year resolutions. I don’t think that any one way it best, so I just go with what feels right for me at the time.

While last year I focused on a single intention for the whole year, this year I decided to return to more traditional resolutions. I have two major goals for my business this year, one big goal for my home life, and a few self-care practices that I would like to make more regular. I have an altered book that I have been working on sporadically during the past year, so I decided to do an art journal page in the altered book about my 2018 goals and resolutions. I wrote each resolution on a card and placed them all in an envelope glued to the page.

New Years Resolution Art Therapy Journal | Creativity in Therapy

If you are looking for some more direction about art activities for goals, new year’s resolutions, commitments, and intentions, here are some art directives that I have shared in the past.

  1. One Word Collage: An Art Directive for Resolutions
  2. What Do You Need To Hold On To And Let Go Of?
  3. Goals, Resolutions, and Commitments
  4. Intentions for the Year
  5. Intention Word Doodle
  6. Mid-Year Check-In Art Journal Exercise

By the way, did you know that the tradition of New Year’s resolutions goes back thousands of years? I found this short history article very interesting: http://www.history.com/news/the-history-of-new-years-resolutions

How do you approach New Year’s Resolutions and goal-setting? Do you have a favorite art directive for this? Share below in the Comments!


Carolyn Mehlomakulu, LMFT-S, ATR is an art therapist in Austin, Texas who works with children, teens, and families. For more information about individual therapy, child and teen counseling, family therapy, teen group therapy, and art therapy services, please visit: www.therapywithcarolyn.com.

This blog is not intended to diagnose or treat any mental health conditions. All directives, interventions, and ideas should be used by qualified individuals within the appropriate bounds of their education, training, and scope of practice. Information presented in this blog does not replace professional training in child and family therapy, art therapy, or play therapyArt therapy requires a trained art therapist.

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