Writing as Therapy – Authoring to Heal your Mind and Body

Guest article provided by: madeforsuccess.com

Health and wellness take many different shapes and forms. We’re often told to focus on our sleep, our exercise, diet, and hydration as basic four pillars for achieving the elusive goal of “optimal wellness.” While there are many types of therapeutic approaches one can take to achieve better health, the power of writing as therapy is an oft-neglected technique that can yield incredible results.

To use writing as therapy, one takes the experiences of their life and documents them into a tangible narrative that bridges the gap between past and present. 

With all of the conflict that we experience in our lives, it’s all too common to have past experiences that continue to trouble us in our day to day present. The trauma that stems from these past experiences is due to the mind failing to appropriately integrate and make sense of the events that happened, causing your mind to experience more stress, anxiety, and depression.

As a Seattle book publisher, Made for Success Publishing, we work with authors who are looking to publish their own stories and experiences for the sake of sharing them with the world. But today, I thought it would be beneficial to talk about how to write for yourself! Using writing as therapy to overcome challenges in your life and promote inner healing.

Using Writing as Therapy

The best part about using writing as therapy for the mind and body is that there isn’t one correct way to do it.

When you write about experiences in your life, your mind is able to take events that only exist in your own mind (namely, the past) and integrate them into your present state of being.

Whether that experience is a complex relationship from the past, a record of your own inner-thoughts and criticisms, or even some type of goal that you wish to accomplish, you stand to benefit from writing it out.

Writing for therapeutic purposes is similar to the practice of journaling or keeping a diary.

Famous People who used writing for therapy

It isn’t self-evident that you should copy famous people just because they’re famous. Everybody is different, and often, those with fame don’t necessarily emulate the types of qualities that should be strove for by all.

However, to reinforce the point of writing for therapy, these are a few people you may have heard of that kept journals or diaries.

  • Thomas Edison
  • Winston Churchill
  • Matthew McConaughey

In fact, Matthew McConaughey’s recent book Greenlights was created after McConaughey sat in the desert for 10 days reading the old journals that he had kept since he was a boy.

Journaling and writing as a form of therapy hold the keys to tremendous inner-growth.

How to use writing as therapy

Incidentally, the advice that I can give you on how to use writing as therapy is quite similar to the advice that I’d give an author looking to finish their manuscript. You simply need to write and cultivate it as a discipline.

Don’t worry too much about how to do it correctly, so much as doing it at all. Taking the time to write a little bit each and every day is how you can start to form a better relationship with your unconscious mind, and as a result, experience blossoming health from the inside out.

I’m only sharing this part here in case you’re the sort of person who really doesn’t respond well to the “there’s no right way to do it” axiom.

Sample Writing Regimen

So, while I maintain that there is no 100% correct way to begin self-authoring, perhaps a sample writing regimen will be helpful for you to set up your own framework.

  1. In the morning within 30 minutes of waking up, write down your general mood so far. How do you feel after sleeping? No wrong answers here. Try to write at least two sentences.
  2. Any time during the day that you notice a distinctive shift in your mood, write it down and also write what you suspect may be the cause. Doesn’t matter if you’re correct or not.
  3. Before you go to bed, write down 1 or 2 good things that happened in your day, and maybe write down another thing that you wish had gone differently.

That should be enough to get you started!

Writing as a Form of Therapy

While this is definitely not an exhaustive list of the powerful benefits to writing as a form of therapy, I hope that this opens your mind to the potential that self-authoring can provide you.

By no means do you simply need to write about yourself, too. Writing anything is a means of getting closer to your inner-thoughts and developing a healthier relationship with your subconscious mind.

I hope that as you continue writing, you notice all of the wonderful things that make you who you are, and start to see them bloom and shine brighter than ever before!

-Evan E. @ Made for Success