When you feel bad, writing is the last thing that comes to your mind. You get different ideas: calling a friend, picking a fight with your partner, taking your dog on a walk, or doing some yoga. Some of those ideas are pretty good. But did you know that writing things down was also helpful for overcoming negative thoughts and feelings?
It doesn’t really matter if you can write or not. No one expects you to become the new Hemingway. You just sit and write down your thoughts, whatever they might be. If you do it on a daily basis, it’s called journaling, a method that many psychotherapists suggest during therapy.
What makes it so useful?
It Feels Like Meditation
The most common type of meditation is based on the concept of vairagya (detachment from thoughts and emotions). You’re supposed to sit in a comfortable position, with your eyes closed and your body still. Then, you’ll allow the thoughts and feelings to appear and disappear without provoking or stopping them on purpose.
It sounds easier than it is.
In practice, meditation is a huge challenge for beginners. They get attached to a thought and they take it too far.
Writing is way easier. You have something to focus: the process of writing. So the thoughts and emotions are in the background, and you put them on paper. It’s possible to stay detached when writing down thoughts and feelings. You’ll be getting better at this with practice.
Writing Helps You Deal with Negative Thoughts
Why don’t you try journaling when you’re trying to overcome negative thoughts? It may help you break the pattern.
Once you get into the whirlpool of negative thinking, it consumes you. One thought leads to another, and soon you’re so bummed that you can’t see a way out of the bad situation. What does writing do? It helps you see things without being too attached.
When you write, the problems tend to look less serious. You can act like you’re writing about another person who has this problem. Create a character and write. Observe. What can this person do to get through this? Think of a solution. Maybe you can implement it?
Practice Makes You a Better Writer, Too
Many people struggle with writing, but they still have to do it. Before you start wondering if it’s safe to use essay services, why don’t you practice a bit? Students, employees, and business owners in all industries have to practice writing.
What will you write about? Your thoughts and feelings! It’s the easiest way to find inspiration, since you always have them.
Each evening, before you go to bed, ask yourself: How do I feel? Write whatever comes to your mind. Don’t worry about style and form. Just write. Two weeks into the practice, you can evaluate the things you wrote. You’ll notice you’re already getting better. You can write faster and the text is easier to read and understand. Imagine what years of practice would do to your writing skills!
Writing Sparks Your Dreams
“What if I could just leave everything and start from scratch?”
That thought sounds too scary, so you’ll abandon it as soon as it appears. Or you’ll think about it, but you’ll feel like you’re fantasizing and you’ll go back to your sad reality as soon as you’re done.
When you take it as a writing prompt and you express how you feel about it, you’ll unlock your deepest thoughts and emotions. This little experiment can help you figure out what you want in your life. In a strange way, that piece of text may lead to the action you need to take.
It Helps You See Progress
If you see a therapist, they will probably recommend writing down your feelings. That’s because thoughts and feelings are easy to forget. If you wonder how you felt last month, it will be difficult for you to recreate the impressions. But when you see them in written, you have a proof.
By comparing the writings on an ongoing basis, you see the progress you’ve made in healing, intelligence, mindfulness, or anything else you focus on.
Writing Is Surprisingly Beneficial!
You may not feel like writing today. Maybe you haven’t written anything since college. But you know what? It will only take few minutes. All you need is a notebook and a pen. You can even use a note-taking app on your phone.
Try to express your feelings and write for five minutes today. Maybe you’ll have to force yourself to do this for a few days, but do it. You won’t even notice how the practice turns into a routine. At one moment, you’ll realize you’re not struggling to write. On the contrary – you’ll feel good while doing it.
Photo credits: https://unsplash.com/photos/Ak5c5VTch5E
This is a collaborative post supporting our Peace In Peace Out initiative.