It’s easy to think that writing is something that only writers do. But therapeutic writing is very different. Truth is people have long written journals as expressive, creative or therapeutic writing.
The work of both James Pennebaker, and Dr Ira Progoff, both psychologists, provides scientific research supporting the many benefits of expressive writing through journaling.
The potent mechanism was the act of expressing their feelings, getting them out of the mind and into an external space. Writers found it helped them manage their confused thoughts, label their emotions and gain insight as they were able to access part of the brain not involved in talking, The resulting benefits to them psychologically, and even physically, were considerable.
These benefits are perhaps even more relevant in our modern life today where the levels of stress, anxiety and depression are steadily on the rise, as is the epidemic increase of lifestyle related diseases all impacting our health and wellbeing.
The many scientific studies confirming the benefits of therapeutic writing as:
Decrease in negative mood, distress and physical symptoms
Counteract many of the negative effects of stress
Diminish symptoms of depression, anxiety, panic, substance abuse, PTSD and many other health conditions and disorders
Uplift of positive mood
Improve cognitive functioning
Improve physical health and mental well-being - both in short term and long term
Strengthen the immune system