~ With the Approach of Flu Season, Write!
Although many of us have cultivated a practice of journaling, there’s evidence that taking time to write about a stressful event for only minutes a day may improve the functioning of our immune systems. The benefits of such writing for both emotional and physical health have been demonstrated numerous times, as Bessel van der Kolk, MD, reminds us in The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma. In an except from the book recently reprinted in New York—he writes:
Writing experiments from around the world, with grade-school students, nursing-home residents, medical students, maximum-security prisoners, arthritis sufferers, new mothers, and rape victims, consistently show that writing about upsetting events improves physical and mental health. This shouldn’t surprise us: Writing is one of the most effective ways to access an inner world of feelings that is the key to recovering from genuine trauma and everyday stress alike.”
Jeneen Interlandi provides a glimpse into van der Kolk’s long-term, deep work in the realm of treating trauma, not through the mind, but through the body in “A Revolutionary Approach to Treating PTSD,” published in The New York Times Magazine.
Writing. It is a practice worth keeping in mind.
SRC: To read the entire excerpt from the book published by Viking (2014), titled “Why You Should Write a Letter to Yourself Tonight,” as printed in New York, visit: nymag.com/scienceofus/2014/10/why-you-should-write-yourself-a-letter-tonight.html
The article about Bessel van der Kolk’s work in The New York Times Magazine can be accessed there.