The Therapeutic Experience of Origami for Adults and Children

Origami is a peaceful paper folding craft that is accessible anytime anywhere with endless possibilities. Choices range from folding objects, animals, and flowers. Pick which paper folding calls to you then follow the step by step instructions of how to move the paper.

The therapeutic experience of the art develops mindfulness skills and being connected to the present moment. Every fold requires precision and gentleness. Nurturing our minds in a way to develop the skill that ambition and accomplishments can be completed through patience and taking our time, instead of efficiency.

This step by step practice is the release of self-judgement and perfectionism. It is the reminder that we are not machines. We don’t make perfect lines and that is okay. We are not perfect and that is okay. In the end the Origami you create is a creation from you not carbon copy competition.

Practicing folding origami promotes problem solving skills. The idea of taking a simple project of paper folding following step by step as you watch before your eyes how it starts to make a difference with each fold. You get the visualization of how after completing each necessary step you get closer to solving the challenge. Patience is being developed and translated as a required skill when faced with problem solving in real life.

The therapeutic advantages of origami are spectacular. As it can promote goal setting. For example if it has been a goal for you to travel to Paris you could fold the Eiffel Tower. With each fold write or say out loud words or phrases of what it will take to reach your goal. Another example is if a child wants a cat as a pet. They can do the same thing by expressing what it will take for that to happen along with the responsibilities that come with having a cat. Completing an origami project takes time but the results are magnificent and fulfilling. Seeing the outcome of the art in a picture and working toward it provides an individual with a goal. It’s important to have goals in life and it’s great that an activity such as origami can help a person learn about it. Origami provides an opportunity to relax and have fun. The enjoyment that goes along with this activity is definitely good therapy and there are endless opportunities.

You can also fold origami with your family. Doing origami in a group setting cultivates a sense of belonging, patience, and respect for one another. As you see everyone has chosen what interests them you develop respect for their choices and understand it is important to be patient with one another as everyone does things at different paces. The sense of belonging comes from respecting how we are similar and different through the experience together. Something you can do when you are all done is play with them as yourselves to tell a family story together. Or play with them as imagined characters to go on an adventure.