Guest post by Grace Carter
Writing can bring with it a whole list of health benefits, so it should be no surprise that it can help you heal emotionally. It’s great for helping you express emotions and thoughts that you were not able to communicate out loud. Most women with PCOS are highly creative and spirited but have lost their spark over the years. So, writing is a great way to vent and also possibly share their PCOS story with the world. You can beat depression, anxiety and anything else you might be feeling – just with the simple act of writing.
Keep reading to find out how to use writing to heal emotionally.
Benefits of writing therapy
Keeping a journal can benefit anyone, especially women with PCOS, because of the improved memory and relaxation it provides. However, writing is especially beneficial to a person suffering from trauma, or in need of emotional healing. Writing expressively can help people heal emotional wounds. A study found that people who wrote about their trauma for fifteen minutes per day for four consecutive days were better off health-wise up to four months later (Baikie & Wilhelm, 2005). This kind of regular, therapeutic writing can be very helpful for people who are searching for meaning in their trauma and experiences, find a new outlook on life, and find the positives within their negative experiences.
Choose a writing format that works for you. That could mean traditional journaling, a little flip notebook, an online journaling program or course, or starting your own blog. Try not to bring a lot of expectations with you and remember that it’s the process and the healing that matter, not the format. Set some goals for yourself, and if you feel like being extra creative, feel free to doodle or draw in your journaling space as well. Pick certain days and times when you have time and will enjoy writing and try to stick to that schedule. Check out resources such as SimpleGrad, Academadvisor, MyWritingWay, and Viawriting to brush up on your writing skills.
Start slow and see how it goes
“If this is your first experience with journaling, or you haven’t written in a long time, then it’s important to remember that it’s okay to start small. You don’t need to sit down and write a novel or a masterpiece. It’s perfectly okay to begin just writing a few paragraphs, over even a few lines, every day,” suggests Pedro Green, health blogger at WritingPopulist and LetsGoAndLearn. It’s better to write consistently at a smaller volume, than to feel as if you need to write pages a day and be inconsistent with your exercise.
A lot of people who write for emotional healing also have dreams of publishing their work and sharing it with people. And that’s fine, but make sure that you concentrate on working on yourself primarily, and telling your PCOS story as it is and as you have experienced it. This means to avoid getting bogged down in heavy editing and rewriting things to suit an outside audience. Focus on your healing and realize that you’ll have time further down the line for when you want to improve and perfect your work.
Helpful ideas and writing prompts
A lot of times the hardest part about writing is just getting started or moving past a bout of writer’s block. “One thing you can try is simply writing a letter to yourself, or a letter to someone else (you don’t even need to send the letter if you don’t want to.) Try getting your creativity flowing by writing a poem. Nobody needs to read it, so you don’t have to feel self-conscious,” writes Donald Zajac, health blogger at Studydemic.
Writing exercises to try
If you find yourself struggling from a lack of creativity or ideas, don’t worry, there are tons of writing exercises you can try to jump-start your creative flow. Try writing about where you are in life, how you feel about that, and where you’d like to see things move. Try writing in a stream of consciousness manner for five or ten minutes. Begin each day by writing a list of things you are grateful for. You’ll feel encouraged to expand on these things, as well as remind yourself of the good things in your life.
There are lots of ways to facilitate emotional healing if you have PCOS, but writing is a good place to start. It doesn’t cost anything, and you can move along at your own pace. Remember that the format and kind of writing you do really doesn’t matter, as long as you enjoy it and it facilitates your healing process that can help you get through many of the symptoms and stress of the syndrome.