Writing down your feelings is commonly referred to as expressive writing. Many writers and psychologists know the benefits of expressive writing, which is why it is very often recommended as a form of therapy. Psychiatrists recommend it to their patients, especially if they are suffering from depression or addiction to substances and activities. People who are recovering substance abusers or problem gamblers can gain a lot from expressive writing because expressive writing helps people not only in controlling emotions gone haywire, but it can also help them feel in control over their lives and problems. Recovering addicts have a very difficult path ahead of them, in terms of getting their lives back in order, all the while being psychologically and emotionally stable not to fall into relapse.
What are the benefits of expressive writing?
Expressive writing means writing down your thoughts and emotions as they come in the moment of writing – you just sit down and write, whether in a diary, or on the computer (although, longhand writing is recommended more often than typing on a computer), without planning what you’re going to write. No matter how long you write, by the end, your thoughts will be clearer, and your emotions will be easier to control.
However, expressive writing in diary format lacks one thing: audience. No one will get to read what you have written but your own self, and while this does not diminish the therapeutic power of expressive writing, it will not bring you together with other people who go through the same things as you. And sometimes, that sense of companionship is needed more than the alones of expressive writing.
Can blogging be therapeutic?
Many researchers, scientists and psychiatrists have begun to recommend blogging, as a form of public expressive writing as a therapeutic tool. One of the greatest benefits of blogging is the opportunity to share your thoughts while remaining anonymous, so if you do not want your immediate friends and family to be aware of your writing, you can easily hide behind a pseudonym, while still be able to connect with other people. This makes it easier for recovering addicts to understand that they are not alone.
When you have an audience that listens, or in this case, reads, every word you’ve written, and whose members show genuine care about the content of your writing, the benefits of expressive writing reach the stratosphere. People who have emotional problems, health problems or are recovering from an overwhelming addiction need the companionship that blogging offers them, because it is difficult to be alone on such a daunting path.
It is not only people who suffer from emotional problems that can gain from blogging and expressive writing. Doctors have noted that cancer patients who used expressive writing as a therapeutic tool had better results from chemotherapy, were able to remain positive throughout their treatment period, and had significant amount of influence over the positive results of their treatment.
Expressive writing by itself has additional benefits. When you write without planning, you become better at gathering your thoughts, which in turn, will make you a better speaker. This can make your daily interactions much more enjoyable, as well as give you an increase in self-confidence. When your expressive writing becomes public – once you’ve started a blog, because you will get feedback which will tell you that not only you’re not alone, but that you have also affected other people who are messaging you and commenting their support. Which leads us to another impressive, and often overlooked benefit: blogging is fun, and it can also be a source of income.
Blogging as a source of entertainment
You do not need much to start a blog. WordPress, the most popular content management system, offers instructions on how to use it, no matter which hosting website you use. Additionally, there are plenty of WordPress themes that are ready and available to you. With them, you can create a blog that is not only the place where you express your thoughts and feelings to an audience, but it is also your own special place.
One of the themes to allow you complete creative freedom is the Spine Theme Demo. As a WordPress theme, you can use it for your blog, and get the full blogging experience with its features. It allows plenty of experimentation, and it has numerous benefits. One of its best features is that it is translate ready – which means your content will be read and understood by readers all over the world.
It also offers plenty of ways to make your personal space entertaining – from a kaleidoscope of colors and images, to layouts and sidebars, and it is very easy to use, even if you are a beginner. You can make your blog look any way you want, and express yourself not only in writing, but in other artistic ways, which increases the value of blogging as a form of therapy.
You can create an online personality for yourself that you wouldn’t be able to show in a different place, and you can adjust it until it fits you perfectly, as well make what you are writing about not only interesting, but also pleasing to eye as well. These features are bound to bring more traffic to your blog, which will increase the feeling of companionship and community, the two things that lay at the heart of blogging. You can be fun and entertaining, or you can present a more serious persona, all depending on what you wish to achieve and what you wish to present. This freedom is the reason why blogging can be a better form of therapy than simply writing for yourself in a diary, for not only will you gain companionship and compassion from the audience you will attract, you will get to have fun expressing yourself in various different ways as well. Also, you will have the opportunity to interact with many other people who share your problems and who have had similar experiences as yourself, which you will not get if you’re only writing for yourself.