writing

Expressive Writing Can Reduce Anxiety

“Writing down your feelings helps you stop dwelling on past events, which reduces stress and allows for better sleep,” says James W. Pennebaker, PhD, professor of psychology at the University of Texas, in Austin.
Much research has been done to prove that writing is extremely beneficial to your health, mainly because it reduces stress and anxiety. But the key to maximizing this stress reduction is to write about your personal and emotional experiences.
Expressive writing (in a secret diary or personal journal) let’s your thoughts out of your head where they magnify and become exacerbated. Negative memories and thoughts are insidious and unless they are released, will cause more stress and anxiety.
As they mention in the Penzu Health Benefits section, some questions might be able to get you started:
THE PAST:
o Is there something that has been on your mind lately?
o What are some of your greatest memories?
o What are some of your worst memories?
o Is there anything in your past that you still think about?
o Describe a memorable event and how it made you feel
o Does that memory bring you joy or pain?
o If you could rewrite the past, how might you change how that event occurred?
o Did you learn anything from that memorable event?
o If so, how can that learning be applied to your future?
THE FUTURE:
o What are some of your dreams for the future?
o What does your ideal life look like in 5, 10, 15 years?
o Is your future a positive or negative one?
o If negative, what can you do to make it positive?
o How can you change your thinking today to make for a positive future?
o If there are things about your past you want to change, what then can you carry forward?
o Is there anyone you admire and strive to emulate?
o How different is your future self from your current self?
o What do you have to do to become your ideal self?
Hopefully these questions will ignite some inspiration. Try writing on a pad of paper or in an online diary such as Penzu .
Start writing and feel better!