This article is written by Linda Grandes, a cognitive behavioural therapist (CBT) who strives for finding unorthodox forms of therapies for her clients. The Therapeutic Power of Writing Writing is a form of art and a powerful tool for expressing our deepest thoughts and emotions. Just like any other form of art, writing can help us deal with emotional struggles, negative experiences, worries, and burdens. In other words, writing can be used as a successful form of self-therapy and can have beneficial effects on our mental health. Therapists all over the world prescribe writing as a part of a client’s therapy. If you’re curious to find out what therapeutic powers writing has for our mental health, and why you should try and recommend it to your clients, just keep reading.
Emotional crises are often caused by our deepest inner struggles, and can’t be solved until we’re able to learn about ourselves. Talking to a friend, a family member, or our therapist is often not as honest as it should be, and people still omit those facts which make them vulnerable and fragile. However, writing can be used as a form of gaining self-knowledge.
To put it simply, therapeutic writing is about:
- being brutally honest on paper
- writing freely, openly and without reservations
- admitting the deepest, most painful detail about your fears, emotions, and thoughts
This way, a person will be able to learn a lot about themselves, which will help them overcome emotional obstacles easier.
- Emotional Healing & Growth
There are those situations in which a person needs therapeutic help not to solve a problem, but rather to overcome the emotional barriers they’ve come across. Writing can help a person find emotional balance and stability, and prevent the emotions from taking over their lives. Here’s what they need to do:
- write about their emotions
- transfer the negative emotions from their body to the paper
- take control of them
- process their emotions through writing
- get it all out of their system
By dealing with their emotions and writing down anything that has been bothering them, your clients are actually processing the emotions and finding a way to heal. In addition, this will promote emotional growth and allow them to power through a future emotional crisis.
When we’re sad, suffering, emotionally broken, or confused, sometimes all we need is a push in the right direction to get through it. However, not everyone has the emotional support from friends or family, and they need to have their own back. Writing can help your clients find the strength they need within themselves and become aware of their own energy and courage. You can recommend your client to start practising affirmations writing. Affirmations are based on the belief that “a positive mental attitude supported by affirmations will achieve success in anything” (Wikipedia). Here’s how it works:
- a person writes their own affirmations nurturing a positive attitude towards the world around them
- affirmations need to be positive and empowering:
- I am a strong, stable person.
- Today, I will do great things.
- I will conquer my fears.
- the person says the affirmations out loud, for several times in a row
- it’s best to do them in the morning, right after getting out of bed
Affirmations writing will have strong therapeutic power and help your clients recover their self-esteem and emotional stability.
- Confronting Problems
One of the most commonly seen issues when it comes to emotional problems is suppressing them. “Many people state that the biggest issue with solving a problem is admitting that it exists. Most people try suppressing their problems, but it’s impossible to do it long-term,” says Leona Pearson, a therapist, and writer at Studicus.com. Therefore, writing in the form of a journal can help a person:
- admit there’s a problem
- define their problem
- confront it
- find a way of dealing with it
Solving a problem is impossible until we’ve admitted it’s there and it’s scary. With the power of writing and the possibilities it gives us, it’s easier to come clean with yourself and be open about your issues.
- Reducing Stress
Stress is a dangerous feeling of emotional tension and physical unease. It’s known to be the cause of other major health conditions such as increased heart rate, high blood pressure, heart attack, and many other issues. Therefore, it’s important for each person to find a way of dealing with stress, reducing it, and overcoming it. Writing can work wonders for many people struggling with stress and help them lower it or eliminate it completely. This goes especially for creative writing, but stands for any other form of writing, as well. All that the person needs to do is:
- whenever you feel stressed out, write
- write about anything that comes to your mind
- it can be poetry writing, fiction writing, or just a dear-diary type of writing
Try using writing as a form of eliminating anxiety, relaxing, and overcoming stressful episodes of your day.
Final Thoughts Writing definitely has therapeutic powers and can be extremely helpful for people struggling with all kinds of emotional problems. It’s a great form of therapy to recommend to your clients and help them improve their mental health. Make sure to read all about the therapeutic powers of writing we’ve provided above and give your clients a relaxing, creative way out of their problems.
BIO: Linda Grandes aim is to explore the efficiency of unconventional treatment methods and guide her clients on the road towards regaining mental health. She is also an enthusiast blogger at Studyton.com and one of the writers at coursework writing service.