Thursday, January 28, 2010

Writing, Depression and Healing

Writing Through the Darkness: Easing Your Depression with Paper and PenThere has been a significant amount of research indicating that writing promotes both emotional and physical healing.

In “Writing Through the Darkness: Easing your Depression with Paper and Pen,” author Elizabeth Maynard Schafer cites a number of studies which support that writing about traumatic events can ultimately improve mood, reduce blood pressure, increase immune system functioning, alter brain wave patterns, reduce pain, and more (pp. 36-38). Schafer also writes about her own struggles with depression and offers a number of approaches to writing as well as writing prompts, recommendations, resources, and suggestions for the creation and maintenance of a writing group for those with mood disorders. She also maintained a blog and while she is no longer updating it, it contains some wonderful writing prompts for use either individually and within a group. I’ll be using some her prompts during the 12 - week group that I plan on offering beginning in April for those who struggle with depression.

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