I recommend writing, daily, to all my clients and give them the best-selling book by Julia Cameron, The Artist’s Way. Julia describes the process she calls “Morning Pages” for writing three pages, stream of consciousness, every morning without censoring, without worries about spelling or sentence structure, just what flows, spontaneously, from heart and mind.
After several days or even weeks of whining and complaining something shifts; patterns and insights emerge which create opportunities to make different choices, small changes in daily living. These decisions can enhance life experiences and diminish the problematic ones.
Over time, the benefits add up to counteract symptoms of stress, depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders.
- Manage Stress. Writing about what’s creating stress and anxiety in your life helps you to identify stressors and pinpoint what’s going on internally. And sometimes you just need to vent, even if it’s only on the page.
- Enhance emotional intelligence. Writing about how you feel helps you interpret and make sense of your emotions.
- Improve communication skills. Learning to put your thoughts down on paper translates into a better ability to express yourself to others verbally.
- Set and achieve goals. Writing down your wishes and dreams signals to your brain that they are important and takes them one step closer to existence. Furthermore, organizing your thoughts into words helps prioritize projects and needs.
- Build self-discipline. Writing every day, even when you’re not necessarily in the mood to do so, strengthens your ability to stick to something on an ongoing basis. Therefore, you’re better able to do other things that require self-discipline.
- Assist in problem-solving. New perspectives become clear when you write—even if you’re not consciously trying to find solutions. Writing helps you look at a situation more objectively and from more than one point of view.
- Create empathy. Writing about an event or relationship helps you see more clearly what others might be feeling or thinking during your interactions with them.
- Become more aware of habits and patterns. What makes you happy? When do you feel most troubled? Writing regularly, and then reading what you’ve written over time, can help identify what creates or detracts from your well-being.
- Increase creativity. Writing prepares you to be creative in other areas of your life, as well as on the page. You learn to be creative in your approaches to dealing with pain, difficult emotions, and challenging relationships.
To sum it up, writing makes you happier!
Check out this research summary from Harvard Healthbeat.