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Wednesday, 14 August 2013

The Write Medicine


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Is writing the new medicine? Could it replace pills and potions to heal both mind and body? Soothe the soul, and help you get back on the road  to recovery and happiness? I think so, and so do a lot of other people. Studies have been going on for years to prove as much. Writing is a great way to express yourself, getting your deepest innermost thoughts out on the page can do wonders if you have experienced a stressful or traumatic event. Perhaps written disclosure reduces psychological stress?

Expressive writing done on a regular basis can really help, even if you only pick up the pen every other  day, if you can, and write for 15 minutes without stopping, you’ll be doing yourself a power of good, and nobody need see your words. I’d encourage you to keep a journal, sit somewhere quiet where you can be alone, and just let your thoughts flow through the pen, or if you prefer, type straight onto your chosen device, be it laptop, I pad, or your mobile phone!  You’ll be amazed how much you can write in just a few minutes.

Writing like this, is a way of starting an internal dialogue with yourself, it allows you the opportunity to face sensitive issues you might not be able to discuss with anyone in person. It helps to work things through your mind, and of course expressive writing is not only good for the mind, studies have also shown that people with asthma, developed better lung function. Many other medical conditions can benefit too. Further reading can be found here. And if you're already the writerly type, check out the list of benefits and see if you can identify with them. You might just be surprised at what you read.


Why not try a work of fiction? Make something up, give someone a problem, make it difficult for them, introduce something totally unexpected, then get them out of it. You don’t have to even begin at the beginning. Start at the end, kill someone off, or have two people kiss and make up.Whatever comes to mind, write it down today. Doesn't matter how off the wall it is, just get it written.

Tomorrow, after your sub conscious has had time to think about what you've written, go back to it and write the middle, or the beginning! It really doesn't matter how you get your words down. Your mind is powerful, and it will work it out. Whether you’re new to writing, or you've been doing it for years, the benefit of expressing yourself really is the best medicine.

I'm looking forward to hearing about your experiences.

10 comments:

  1. I've always found writing to be therapeutic - whether I am writing a song, short story or something in my incredibly sporadic journal.

    In fact, I often apologise to my diary that I only really use it when I'm feeling down and just want to moan! Either way, it works for me and I am constantly encouraging others to give it a try. I was more surprised by the other suggested health benefits - better lung function for Asthma sufferers?!

    Great post, Maria.

    Kelly's Eye - Writing, Music, Life

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    1. I was very surprised about the other health benefits...as you know I have asthma, and didn't realise writing is a therapy for it...

      I can identify with your diary habit - I moan at mine too! Makes me feel better though!

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  2. I believe a huge number of people use writing to help express issues that are affecting them - many are carried out in therapeutic sessions, many are not and will never be read, but they can be a valuable healing tool.

    I believe reading, too, can be a healer!

    My last very-tongue-in-cheek blog post was a bit of my own therapy after a recent hospital visit where I was in isolation for 3 days!

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    1. Both reading and writing is escapism, and I think that could well be the key. After all, as a reader you are taken to places beyond your wildest dreams, you feel for characters surrounded by perils, and their problems become yours, and maybe you forget about your own for a while...

      As a writer you make it all happen!

      Going to head over to your blog now Lindsay, and check out that post. :-)

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  3. I'm sure writing is good for me - but I'm not going to stop to prove the theory!

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    1. Most definitely...:-) Keep pushing the pen Patsy.

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  4. Such a good suggestion. Healing via writing may not replace medication for all people, but it sure makes a powerful supplement. (Or maybe it's the other way around, and medication is the supplement!)

    And now I'm off for my daily write/therapy. :)

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    1. Hi Kern, perhaps you are correct, thank you for dropping by, enjoy your therapy!

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  5. Interesting post, Maria. I definitely think that writing can be very therapuetic. I'm reading Richard Wiseman's Book '59 seconds', exploring the key to happiness, which mentions studies have proven writing down thoughts are more powerful to help people feel better than 'talking out' problems.

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    1. Hi Vikki, I've not seen that one, I'll have a peep via Amazon... I'm not surprised though as lots of folk struggle to talk about stuff...especially true of men I think.

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