In 2023, mental health is a priority for many of us. If new techniques and new treatments are offered regularly, the good old method of writing therapy could be much more effective. We explain when and how to do it well.
Lhas 13 minutes techniquethe indoor lobsterthe fear ring… Recently we have seen many new methods to improve and enhance our inner balance take care of your sanity. Including the writing therapy seems to be making a comeback this year. And for good reason, there’s nothing like writing to reduce anxiety, depression and stress, Charlotte Haigh, a licensed marriage and family therapist in California, told the magazine. shine.
But what is that exactly? includes writing therapy write about a trauma or a certain feeling under the guidance of a psychologist. “When we write down our thoughts and feelings and then process them verbally with a therapist, we involve several areas of our brain in our healing process,” says the expert. While it can be difficult to speak out loud about trauma, writing can be a space where we have the freedom to be completely honest and vulnerable.
Writing Therapy VS Journaling: What’s the Difference?
Beware though Do not confuse writing therapy with writing a diary. And for good reason, the way a person keeps a journal can be very different: narrating the day, reflecting on past events, listing the things you need to do… “Sometimes people keep a journal just to think about it says LaNail R. Plummer, Licensed Clinical Consultant and CEO of Onyx Therapy Group.
On the same topic ⋙ Mental health : You should try the “shadow diary”, this writing habit improves your well-being
Writing therapy, on the other hand, does a therapeutic process Aim to improve your mental well-being by writing about stressful experiences. “It’s more targeted, it explores the elements of our lives that have influenced us the most,” assures the specialist. Most of time, it must be done with the support of a therapist, unlike the newspaper. “When you open an emotional wound, someone has to be there to heal,” she adds.
Why is writing therapy useful?
What are the benefits of writing therapy? Aside from clearing our minds, Writing would reduce amygdala activity, a part of the brain involved in processing fear-related emotions and memories. “When we experience something, we experience it in the back of our brain through the sensory limbic system. Then we shift it to the amygdala, where many of our emotions reside,” says Charlotte Haigh.
Traumatic experiences therefore linger here and generate strong emotional responses when re-excited in our lives. “Writing therapy shifts this experience to the frontal cortex, where our executive thinking, functioning and processing resides.” The experience somehow transitions from a raw feeling to a rational thought. Therefore easier to handle.
The different phases of writing therapy
How do I do writing therapy? If you feel that writing therapy could be a good fit for you, and more importantly, could help you, don’t start alone: call a therapistwho will guide and reassure you. You can start making them write for a limited time : 5 minutes, then 10 or 15 if you feel comfortable. Not anymore, at the risk of falling into a kind of spiral that isn’t constructive.
A little later, when you feel you have mastered this practice, your therapist can do so assign a writing exercise as homework. Avoid using it before an important appointment or before bed. “In general, it’s best to do writing therapy if you can do some physical activity afterwards, such as walking. Take a walk, run, or dance class,” said LaNail R. Plummer. Finally, don’t hesitate Talk regularly to a loved one about your therapy. “There’s also something very powerful about having someone you trust witness your story, love you and support you no matter what,” concluded Charlotte Haigh. To your pens!
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