If your life seems out of control because you are unclear about what you want or you are going through a turbulent time, writing can help you find some perspective. You may not see yourself as a writer but you will find that a short writing session on a regular basis can help you to uncover unconscious beliefs, feelings, and emotions. It can also be used to deal with some challenging situations.

Using Regular Sessions Of Free-Writing To Gain Focus

To borrow from some artistic types who have learned to handle their neuroses to be more creative, you can start with "morning pages" or "brain drain" pages. This is where you just free-write (fast stream of conscious writing with no editing) for a page or more on a daily basis. One of the advantages of this method is that it frees you from worrying about the quality of your writing, grammar, or spelling. It doesn't matter if you write on loose-leaf sheets, get a composition book at a dollar store, or write on a computer.

Doing these pages is worth the effort for these reasons:

  • You can get the fuzzy confusion out of your head and on to paper. It really does help you find mental clarity.
  • You can examine difficult emotions and come up with ways to handle them by recalling early sources of wisdom in your life. Jump-start this by writing about a imaginary dialogue between you and a grandparent or other mentor who is no longer around.
  • If you get the whining and messy stuff down and out of your brain, you will soon tire of that and want to get busy figuring out what to do to solve your problems. You will eventually want to prioritize your concerns.
  • Dedicated time spent writing can bring forth insights on what you really want out of your future life, even if you first have to write about what you don't want. You take the don't-want lists and turn them into do-want lists. Then you can outline steps to get what you want.

Using It To Deal With Grief Or Emotional Triggers

It helps you deal with difficult situations like:

  • Grief. Some people find it consoling to write letters to people they have lost. You can write things you never got the opportunity to say, and express the feelings you have felt about losing them.
  • People/things who bring out the worst in you. You can figure out what triggers (events, sights, verbalization, actions, gestures, or other things that cause physical and emotional reactions) you have that can make you feel bad or more prone to self-destructive behavior. You can mentally prepare how to respond in triggers to protect yourself and be more effective in getting what you need.

Using It To Prepare For Practical Purposes

You can use writing for practical purposes such as:

  • If you are going to a therapist, you can write out all the things that you find troublesome and put them aside. Later you can come back to them and figure out which things are the most important things you need to deal with. Then you will better prepared for what you want to talk about during sessions.
  • If you are going through a divorce, it can help you prepare for meeting with your attorney, or for attending mediation sessions. You will likely feel calmer and better able to focus on the issues at hand.
  • If you are looking for employment, you can write about the things you find enjoyment in doing. This can help you determine what kind of work you would be most suited for and help you to focus your search.

Keeping It Private For Honesty's Sake

For the greatest benefits, you need to be honest with yourself, so you will need to assure your privacy. If you do it on a computer where other people could access it, password protect the file or save it to a USB flash drive that you remove when not in use. If you do destroy your writing or not save it, the process will still have benefited you.

For more help finding perspective or processing struggles in your life, contact a specialist like Comprehensive Behavioral Health Associates Inc.