Latest Posts • July 3, 2019
All our thoughts and actions are guided by emotions. Love, hate, sadness, trust, disappointment, boredom and curiosity are just a fraction of the emotions and moods that we encounter in life. How we respond to them determines our well-being and life in general.
The fact that music and creative activities help to improve our mood is no secret. Many studies have already shown this connection.
But how they do it – what cognitive strategies the brain uses to regulate our emotions – was the subject of a large study by the BBC Arts Great British Creativity Test and UCL University College London (https://www.bcg.org/ .ucl.ac.uk / news / 2019 / may / creative-activities-help-brain-cope-emotions, May 2019).
Dr. Daisy Fancourt, UCL Behavioural Science and Health and former BBC Radio 3 New Generation Thinker, says: “This study is the first to show the cognitive strategies the brain uses to regulate our emotions when we’re taking part in creative activities. While previous studies have shown the strong link between creative activities and emotions, we’ve not been sure about how this has been happening.”
Almost 50,000 people took part in the study and the results show that there are three different ways in which creative activities can help us manage our emotions and cope with whatever life throws at us:
distraction, contemplation, self-development.
So when we play music, for example, we use creativity to