The Inner Critic

Art is a natural impulse for children as they learn, however, a lot of people have horrible stories about when they quit doing art.  So many art making people talk about how much the inner critic can get their their way to making art, believing in themselves, and for God’s sake, having fun!


But, art therapy is different.

Working on Releasing the Inner Critic in Art Therapy

In art therapy we work on releasing ourselves from the inner critic, from perfectionism, and from expectations on what the outcome is going to be.  We release the should’s, I ought to’s, the have to’s, and how we think other people are going to respond.

The Work of Play

The art therapy studio is a place to experiment, play, take risks, and practice being assertive and bold.  This is the kind of work done with a therapist as well.  I have a couple of “rules” in art therapy that go like this:

  1. You don’t have to follow directions.  There is no right or wrong way to do this.
  2. You’re allowed to disagree with me. (and I want you to practice assertion with me!)
  3. Practicing self-compassion. If we are trying to release perfectionism and self-criticism, I have my clients practice being kind about what they say about themselves, their art ability, and their artwork.  Anyway, how do you learn anything if you’re afraid of making mistakes as you get better and experiment?

Serious business right?

Art making can be playful.  Some of the best new ideas come from a spirit of childlike playfulness.  This is getting in touch with the archetype of the eternal child as well as that natural impulse I was mentioning earlier for creativity.

Creativity, the Inner Child, and Change

If you want to change anything about your life or about yourself, you must do something new.  This is, in its very essence, the nature of creation— thus, creativity.  We do a lot of supporting each other with things like facing the inner critic in my Facebook Group, Art as Alchemy.


Do you live in Ohio and want to step deeper into caring for your soul?   art therapy and dream work is a great way to do this personal work.  Schedule a free consultation here.