Friday, October 7, 2022

Three Aspects to Create Healing via Writing--and an Exercise to Try This Week

Writing being one of the healing arts is not a new idea--there's been research since the 80s on this topic. James Pennebaker, from the University of Texas, Austin, launched my personal interest in this topic when I faced a life-threatening illness in the late nineties. Reading his and others' books on healing via writing clued me into the amazing medical documentation that's accumulated.

A favorite book I've mentioned before on this blog is Louise De Salvo's Writing as a Way of Healing. De Salvo reviews the three aspects that actually make writing a healing experience. They are key.

Before I learned about them, I thought just processing (on paper, with a friend, with a therapist) was enough. I've journaled for years and believe in its power. I've done the Artist's Way morning pages and many other techniques. But I was very interested to hear from De Salvo's book that simply venting (into my journal, into a friend's ear) doesn't have healing effects.