How Sydney’s Group Art Therapy Courses Are Curing Depression

Winston Churchill, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1940 to 1945, bore the seemingly insurmountable task of leading the Allies to victory during the second world war. With that sort of pressure on his shoulders, people are surprised to discover that he made time for painting as a hobby. In his novel “Painting as a Pastime”, Churchill outlines how having a hobby to sink his mind into helped his ability to cope with his reality. If someone leading a nation during a time of global war had time to paint, so do you.

How Can Art Improve Mental Health?

Many people who use art as an outlet say that they turned to their hobby as a means of expressing themselves and their bottled up emotions. Recent studies have shown that art therapy is highly beneficial for individuals suffering from post traumatic stress disorders, anxiety, depression and even dimentia. For this reason, therapists and healthcare professionals alike often encourage their patients to take up art as a hobby to explore their thoughts. 

Why is Group Art Therapy Beneficial? 

Loneliness (in combination with a low self esteem) is one of the most common causes of depression. To counteract this issue, group art therapy courses are increasing in popularity due to the added social benefits in combination with art. With that being said, some of the most common health benefits involved in group art therapy are:

  1. Self-actualisation – the ability for one to express themselves is incredible for self discovery. Creating art can help you explore your emotions without having to explain yourself with words. 
  2. Anxiety-relief – by taking your mind off your daily work life and applying yourself to a creative endeavour that is both challenging and rewarding, it can become a great outlet for processing anxiety. 
  3. Social-life – everyone is trying to find their tribe. If you have a passion for art (or you’re working towards developing one) being creative and like-minded individuals is a great way to connect with others. 

Do I Need to be Good at Art to Join an Art Therapy Course? 

Absolutely not. Art therapy courses are available to all levels of expertise. Although some people may be more experienced than others, the underlying purpose of group art therapy courses is for a sense of community and self expression. Hence, if you’re worried that you’re not good enough; you’re missing the point. 

Where Can I Find Art Therapy Courses in Sydney? 

If you’re having trouble finding courses in Sydney that’ll suit you, we recommend visiting Mindkshetra at: Their courses cover all different levels of ability and have room for anyone interested in getting involved in group art therapy. Enquire on their website or give them a call to find out more information. 

Where Do I Go For More Information?  

If we haven’t been able to answer any of your questions in this article, we recommend watching YouTube channels like ‘The American Art Therapy Association’. They have a lot of great information on art therapy as a neuroscience and the health benefits associated with picking up a creative outlet. If you have any further questions, leave a comment and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. 

5 Tips for Stressing Less and Leading a Healthier Lifestyle

17 million people die from cardiovascular disease every year. I repeat, ’17,000,000 people lose their life to heart-related conditions every year that are possible to be avoided. Being caught in the 9 to 5 rat race isn’t worth losing your life over. For people working tirelessly in high-pressure managerial roles, they oftentimes aren’t even aware of the serious health issues linked to their heightened stress. When it comes to taking back control of your health you shouldn’t spare any expenses. In this article we’re going to outline 5 tips for reducing stress and leading a healthier lifestyle. 

spiritual healing brisbane

1. Prioritise Sleep

Studies are showing that sleep deprivation is closely tied to depression, anxiety, cancers and other serious diseases. Yet, you might be surprised to know that over a quarter of Americans report that they don’t think they’re getting enough sleep. Between the years of 2009 and 2013, over 72,000 collisions and 800 deaths on the road were caused by drowsy driving. With that in mind, here’s a few tips and tricks for improving your quality of sleep:

  • install ‘Pillow’ on your Smartphone: This app tracks the quality of your sleep to help you get an analytical perspective on how much sleep you’re missing every night. After gathering your data, you’ll be giving yourself a clear understanding on what you need to rectify.
  • Investing in a higher quality pillow: You might be surprised to know that the comfort of your pillow plays a substantial role in your quality of sleep. This is because the positioning of your neck when you’re sleeping is imperative for neck posture and opening up your airways. 
  • See a doctor: If you feel that you’re suffering from sleep apnea or excessive snoring, the best thing you can do is see a doctor. Your practitioner will be able to help you determine whether or not you require surgery to open up your airways. Although it might seem daunting, helping your body recharge it’s batteries at night is beyond important for physical and mental health. 

2. Mindfulness, Meditation & Yoga

For some, paying attention to mindfulness seems like a waste of time. However, mindful practices such as yoga and meditation are clinically proven to relieve stress, lower blood pressure, reduce muscle pain, alleviate digestive pain and mitigate heart conditions. According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, in the United States alone heart disease is the cause of one in every four deaths. To put that in perspective, every forty seconds an American dies from an underlying heart condition, contributing to over 655,000 deaths per year in the United States alone. 

If you’re leading a high-stress lifestyle, getting your anxiety under control. The goal with mindfulness, meditation and yoga is to get your breathing under control to open up your respiratory system and reduce tension in your arteries. If you happen to be in Queensland, Within U are widely renowned for their spiritual healing Brisbane. Their training may be able to assist you in taking back control of your health. 

3. Take a Holiday

When was the last time you had a prolonged break? If your anxiety is at an all-time-high, it might be a sign that you need to take a proper vacation. Oftentimes, people who are highly anxious and paranoid are not exactly sure what they’re stressed about. This sensation is often related to diet and lack of exercise. Although COVID19 restrictions are preventing overseas travel, if you’re living in Queensland there are a myriad of attractive options for a holiday destination along the East Coast. If you’re living in other parts of the world that aren’t as fortunate, make sure you browse around for an option that suits what you require. In any case start looking into taking some time off, you’ll thank yourself later. 

4. Get Outdoors

Although it’s one of the most commonly overlooked aspects of health, ensuring that you’re getting enough sunlight throughout your week is a catalyst to a healthier lifestyle. In congruence with the first point in this article, by exposing your skin to sunlight your body produces a hormone called melatonin that is invaluable for a higher quality of sleep. In addition to producing vitamin D, studies have shown that getting sunlight strengthens your immune system, wards off depression, helps you live longer, improved bone density and even contributes to weight loss. In simpler terms, get yourself outside and soak in some sunlight!

5. Watch Your Diet More Carefully 

If you’re a smoker, quit as soon as possible. 480,000 deaths in the United States are a result of smoking or second hand smoke, Studies are now demonstrating how diet is just as large a contributor to mental health as it is to physical health. An unhealthy diet is directly correlated to increased levels of depression, anxiety and other serious underlying health issues. It might be difficult to swap out that weekly chicken burger every week for a salad, but if you can manage to break a few bad habits here and there you’ll surprise yourself with how exponentially you can turn your health around. There’s no ‘one size fits all’ for dietary requirements. Pay attention to what it is that makes you feel the most alive and stick with that. 

Where Do I Go From Here? 

With all of these tips in mind, do everything you can to align your lifestyle in a way that compliments a healthier way of living. Pay more attention to your sleep, start meditation or sign up for a class in yoga, take a break, get outdoors, get some sunlight and start to pay more attention to your diet. With a myriad of health services available, rest assured knowing that help is available if you need it, whether it be physically or mentally. At the end of the day, money is futile if you’re on your deathbed. 


The use of fine needles to bring the systems and functions of your body back into balance

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture involves the insertion of very fine needles through a patient’s skin at specific acupuncture points around the body. These acupuncture points are then stimulated to illicit a specific therapeutic response to help alleviate imbalances within the body natural function. By helping bring the body back into balance when in a state disease or disharmony, your own body’s powerful ability to heal itself is bought into play bringing you back into a state of health.

What happens in an Acupuncture Session?

After the Acupuncturist has diagnosed your condition and looked at the root cause of the problem, appropriate acupuncture points are chosen for you treatment. Very fine sterile single use needles are then used to stimulate the acupuncture points to achieve the desired therapeutic effect.

Does Acupuncture hurt?

You generally feel a tap or light pinch as the needle is introduced to the body. This only lasts for a millisecond and once through the skin you don’t feel much at all. You may feel a little prick if the needle cones in contact with the outer wall of a blood vessel but this are only brief and the acupuncturist will redirect the needle or the blood vessel will be pushed out of the way. Once the Acupuncture Point is reached the Acupuncturist will use the needle to stimulate and activate the point at which time you will feel a dull radiating sensation.

Where does Acupuncture come from?

The medical system of acupuncture has a history dating back almost 5,000 years in China. Although other traditional cultures may have employed something similar, China has refined and developed the system over thousands of years to what it is today. It came about as a by-product of hundreds of years of medical practitioners’ observations and refinements of understanding the human system, its physical structure, its functional abilities, and the links between emotional activity, aspirations, thought, and the larger environment.

What is an Acupuncture point?

These are points on the body that, if stimulated correctly, can produce certain therapeutic affects and actions throughout the body. Acupuncture points used in a treatment may or may not be in the same area of the body as the targeted symptom. These points have been grouped and categorised according the meridian they are located on and according to their therapeutic effects and actions. Modern research has verified these therapeutic effects within certain conditions leading to their recognised by the World Health Organisation.

What is Acupuncture Needle like?

They are very fine needles varying in thickness and length. The thickness of a needle can be from 0.18 of a mm to 0.35 of a mm so very small especially compared to a hypodermic needle you might be used to from a doctor.

What are the points called and how are they located? Acupuncture points are other called by their Chinese name of by combining the name of the meridian or channel they fall on with a sequential number given to the Acupuncture point. An example of this would be PC6 the 6th point on the Pericardium channel. There are 12 main meridians/channels on the body which are mirrored on each side run up or down. The points are located on the body through the use of bony landmarks and through measurements called a Cun which are relative in size to the individual patient’s body.

Chinese Herbal Medicine

Patent Chinese herbal formulas are used to treat various conditions and disorders as well as aiding in general health and wellbeing

Chinese herbal medicine has been around as long as humanity itself with early man’s survival depending on what plants were toxic or not and this experience also lead to understanding what made him stronger and helped sustain life, and even help ward of infections. Over thousands of years and millions of human trials, the complex and sophisticated diagnostic and treatment methods of Chinese herbal medicine were developed.

Herbal medicine then lead to the combining of herbs which further developed in to hundreds of herbal formulas covering a wide range of health problems. These formulas were designed holistically to treat the symptoms of a patients disease/disorder and more importantly to targeted the root cause of the problem improving the patients overall health. These formulas were well documented and further refined over hundreds and thousands of years. The advantage with herbal medicine is if formulated for the condition correctly there were no side effects.

Chinese herbal formulas are now prepared and available in tablet and capsule, and the more recent granular form. These formulas complement acupuncture treatments helping support and improve a patient’s health between treatments.

Acupuncture and WorkCover

Acupuncture treatments performed by Chinese Medicine Practitioners are now covered by WorkCover Queensland

The latest information on covered health providers can be found at

Chinese Medicine Practitioners were specifically mentioned on WorkCover’s website as they are registered health professionals with the Australian Health Professionals Agency and the Chinese Medical Board of Australia (AHPRA/CHBA). This is significant in the fact that the minimum level of education is a Bachelor Degree in Health Sciences and Chinese Medicine, continued professional development, member of an appropriate association, and full indemnity insurance.

What does this mean to you? A Chinese medicine practitioner practicing Acupuncture is formally trained in Chinese medicine with acupuncture a large component which gives them a broader scope of practice in the use of Acupuncture in the treatment of injuries and disorders than other health professionals. Medical Doctors, Physiotherapists, and some other health professionals can legally perform medical interventions using acupuncture needles under the banner or Acupuncture and dry needling but often don’t have a full understanding of Chinese Medicine. There are over 360 acupuncture points on the human body of which an Acupuncturist is trained to accurately locate and use each one.

This is an important step forward for Chinese Medicine Acupuncture in Australia as WorkCover Queensland has made a clear distinction between health professionals offering acupuncture/dry needling and Acupuncture from a Chinese Medicine practitioners solidifying its place in western society and health care.

If you have a work related injury and would like to know more about how we may be able to help with your recovery please give us a call.

TCM Remedial Massage

The use of pressure, manipulation, and massage on the body to stimulate acupuncture points, manipulate joints, and muscle trigger points

Chinese Remedial Massage (Tui Na)

Chinese Massage or Tui Na is a form of Massage used to correct musculoskeletal problems as well as treating diseases and disorders and can be used in place of acupuncture for patients with needle phobias. Tui Na may be used as part of and acupuncture session if required or as a standalone treatment .If Tui Na is utilised as a standalone treatment, the same diagnosis process is used as within an Acupuncture session and like Tui Na uses acupuncture points on the body to affect and balance various systems of the body including the flow of energy and fluids but without the use of needles. The use of pressure, pinching, plucking, rubbing, and revolving techniques, among other methods and techniques are used to stimulate acupuncture points. It is an effective form of massage and is also used to manipulate various parts of the body to aid in the realignment of joints as well as being used to increase and restore proper range of motion of joints, within the body.

Tui Na is not just massage but have the advantage of making use of the full range of effective diagnostic tools used in an acupuncture treatment to find the root cause of a problem. This allows us to focus on the symptoms as well as the underlying cause of a problem in treating the musculoskeletal aspects as well as the internal organ systems of the body. It is effective at treating joint pain (such as arthritis), sciatica, various types of back pain, neck and shoulder pain, muscle spasms, headaches and migraines, stress and anxiety, insomnia, among other external and internal conditions.

As with the other tools and therapies in Chinese Medicine, Tui Na is not solely designed to correct problems, but also help prevent them. This is achieved by clearing blockages in the energy and fluid systems of the body ensuring the free flow of Qi and Blood throughout the body.

Tui Na survived the centuries as a popular form of healing among the general Chinese population. In china Anmo is the term for massage and is a general practice whereas Tui Na is a more specialized term indicating practices based on the theories of Chinese medicine. The style of Tui Na practiced in China today is closer to the work of chiropractors, osteopaths, and physical therapists than to that of massage therapists. It’s taught as a separate but equal field of study in schools of Traditional Chinese Medicine, requiring the same level of training as acupuncturists and herbalists.