Writing Therapy Might Be the Key to Better Mental Health in 2023

, whether as a solo practice or done in partnership with a licensed health clinician, has long been a powerful tool “for unpacking and making sense of our thoughts and feelings,” says Rebecca Hendrix , a licensed marriage and family therapist in New York. Sometimes it can feel as if the latest in mental health treatment is overwhelmingly tech heavy or experimental—hello, free online therapy and psychedelics for postpartum depression or PTSD—but the recent rise in interest surrounding writing therapy feels refreshingly grounded and old school. “There are numerous studies linking journaling about our thoughts and feelings to a decrease in symptoms of anxiety, depression, and stress,” says Charlotte Haigh , a licensed marriage and family therapist in California. “Where else do we have a forum to be our most unfiltered, authentic selves?” Creating that space to be vulnerable and unfiltered in writing sessions with a licensed therapist—a.k.a. therapeutic writing—may be just the form of therapy you need to process lingering feelings of anxiety, depression, or trauma. “It can be a great way to go deeper with the therapeutic work and to help clients continue processing, reflecting, and making progress between sessions,” Haigh says. To understand what makes writing therapy so powerful, we asked three trained therapists to break it down. What is writing therapy? Writing therapy is the act of writing about a specific trauma or feeling under the guidance of a mental health professional. “If we are able to write about our thoughts and feelings […]

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