Diamond painting is a perfect activity for elderly people because of the many positive effects on the brain (similar to meditation). Finishing a piece of art boosts self-esteem and the focus on one task relieves negative thoughts, lowers feelings of stress and anxiety, and improves brain function such as fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination, which are skills that benefit elderly people in everyday tasks to maintain independence.
Let’s dive deeper into all the benefits of diamond painting for seniors and elderly people. Plus more cool stuff about diamond painting and how to get started.
Benefits Of Diamond Painting For Elderly And Seniors
1) Reduces Stress
With diamond painting, you have to focus on one task only, and that is rare in a world where we are used to being overstimulated, over-connected, and multitasking the entire day. Diamond painting takes your mind off stressful things in real life and focuses your thoughts and mind only on putting that tiny diamond on the right spot on the canvas over and over again.
In technical terms: the Amygdala – the headquarters of fear in the brain – relaxes during diamond painting which will feel like your mind is at rest and free of stress.
During diamond painting, you need conscious thought, and this meditative way of crafting gets you in a state of flow, which is when you become deeply engaged in your activity. The mind and body are one in the present moment. And according to a study, it’s the state of flow that lowers stress levels in the body. And you can imagine that it’s hard to think about your problems when you need to focus and concentrate on creating a diamond painting.
Also, there is no pressure with diamond painting. Nobody is breathing down your neck to finish it quickly. You can do it for an hour every day/ week or spend many hours during the day diamond painting while listening to music, enjoying a cup of coffee or glass of wine. You’re in charge.
2) Increased Happiness
According to Franklin D. Roosevelt: “Happiness lies in the joy of achievement and the thrill of creative effort.”
Now isn’t that what diamond painting is all about?
When diamond painting takes your mind of negative thoughts, it also takes you away from negative feelings. As your thoughts directly influence your feelings. And with negative thoughts and worries out of the way, there is space for neutral and positive thoughts and happy feelings.
Also, In the state of flow that is often experienced during diamond painting, you’ll experience enjoyment and fulfillment in what you’re doing, which is the secret to happiness. When you enjoy doing something you’ll feel more satisfied with life. And the impact of more happiness in your life is significant because it’s linked to better health and longevity, increased immunity, and healthy behaviors according to the article of verywellmind.com.
Wow, who would have thought that a simple hobby such as diamond painting could lead to living a longer, happier and healthier life?!
3) Improves Overall Mental Health
Now we can assume that diamond painting is a form of art. Here is more proof that diamond painting is great for elderly people.
This study has found out that “art therapy seems to have a beneficial effect on older individuals who are coping with a variety of challenges in their lives”.
And an Australian study found evidence between arts engagement and overall mental health: “Those who engaged in 100 or more hours/year of arts engagement (i.e. two or more hours/week) reported significantly better mental well-being than other levels of engagement.”
4) Improves Cognitive Brain Functions
Cognitive brain function is the process of receiving, selecting, storing, transforming, and recovering information that the brain gets from external stimulations. Everyone needs these brain skills to work properly, but as we get older we often don’t stimulate our brain as much as we did earlier in life. And when you don’t use it, you lose it. That is why doing mentally challenging tasks every day is important to keep these basic brain skills as strong as possible. So that we can keep doing simple and complex tasks in life. And here is how a diamond painting comes into the picture.
The brain is like a muscle that can and needs to be trained. When you’re doing something new the brain creates new paths and connections. And when you’re doing something over and over again those parts in the brain become stronger. Like any other muscle in your body. Positive thinking creates paths to more positive thinking and vice versa.
While diamond painting you activate both the right and left sides of the brain and make them cooperate together. The right side is the creative, visual, and intuitive side of the brain and the left is the thinking and analytical part of the brain. Both are needed to put the right stone in the right place to create a piece of diamond painting art. Doing this over and over again develops your brain in entirely new ways and makes it stronger. And this makes anyone more efficient in completing tasks in every other area of life. It helps elderly people stay more independent as they get older.
5) Improves Fine-Motor Skills
This study confirms what many older people experience is that (fine) motor function, gait, and balance decline with advanced age. It accelerates markedly from 75-80 years of age. And a decline in these functions has a huge effect on performing everyday tasks and maintaining independence. Practicing and training, because use it or lose applies here as well, as you age can improve these functions. Or even keep them at the same level of performing.
And diamond painting is an excellent practice to improve fine motor skills because it requires you to put dozens or hundreds of stones (or tiles as some might call them) in the right spot of the canvas with the applicator pen. You train the cerebellum part of the brain that is responsible for fine movements, balance, and the brain’s ability to determine limb position.
At first, you might be a bit shaky but over time you’ll notice that you become better. Just like a surgeon.
6) Improves Hand-Eye Coordination
As you improve fine-motor skills with diamond painting you immediately improve hand-eye coordination because fine motor skill is the coordination of small muscles and the synchronicity of hand/ fingers with your eyes. As many parts of the brain are activated during the diamond painting the cerebral cortex that is responsible for control vision is also stimulated and gets stronger over time.
7) Boosts Self-Esteem
According to a study by Girija Kaimal and Kendra Ray is that only 45 minutes of art-making improves self-confidence. As you might have experienced yourself finishing a piece of art makes you feel good about yourself. And this study confirms it. And it already has an effect after 45 minutes. Imagine what it does to your self-esteem if make art every day.
As I saw for myself with my mother, mother-in-law and many elderly people I met on the road is that they love to do diamond painting 45 minutes to an hour a day. Doing this each day will give your self-esteem a boost on a regular basis which can have major effects in the long term for any person. Imagine what a positive effect it can have on an elderly woman or man who feels lonely or depressed.
8) Creates Opportunity To Socialize
I’ve expressed in many articles that socializing is one of the most important keys to happiness in retirement. We are social beings that need daily social interaction with other humans in order to stay healthy (both mind and body).
And as we get older our social circle becomes smaller. Sometimes even up to the point that some of us might even feel lonely.
Now diamond painting is of course an activity you do by yourself. You don’t need any to help you, but sharing the same hobby with other people and doing it together makes it instantly more fun.
And because diamond painting is a popular activity amongst elderly people there is a big chance you find other like-minded people in your area that want to diamond paint together on a regular basis. There are diamond painting Facebook groups out there, you can visit your local senior center or just ask around to find other diamond painters. Maybe your new best friend is around the corner.
9) Ignites Creativity
Doing something new ignites creativity but also doing something creative ignites creativity. Doing something you love ignites creativity and relaxing your brain what diamond painting does ignites creativity.
And creativity has many benefits. It’s a self-discovery journey that unblocks old patterns or habits of thinking. It motivates, helps with problem-solving, promotes thinking, and clarifies thoughts and feelings. Now isn’t that something we all need in life?
As kids, we were always creatively busy. We only did what we love to do, because why would we do something we don’t like? And as we have gotten older a huge portion of our lives we needed to be more practical, analytical to be able to pay the bills, etc. And after retirement, we often have forgotten what we love to do. And picking up creative activities at an older age which ignites our creativity brings us back to how we were as kids and all the benefits and positive feelings that come with it. Isn’t that a beautiful thing about diamond painting?!
10) Is An Emotional Outlet
Diamond painting can be used as an emotional outlet.
Often our mind is busy with the stressful things in life. Our lives can be fast-paced that we don’t make enough room for all our feelings to be expressed properly. And we need that to live free and healthy. As diamond painting puts our stressful thoughts to rest we create space for other feelings to arise that have been blocked or stuffed away for a long time.
When you have trouble putting feelings and thoughts into words, a creative outlet such as diamond painting helps you to express your feelings and experiences. And this lowers overall stress in your life, makes you feel refreshed, and increases your happiness.