A diary can become a good friend. How? Pick up a pen, a piece of paper, let’s relax and take our minds off everything else. Let the pen flow freely on the paper transferring the thoughts that our mind decides to select and transmit to the hand that is writing.
This is called creative writing, which can be defined as “any kind of writing that goes beyond normal professional writing (journalistic, academic, technical). Includes novels, stories, poems”, more simply thoughts and reflections. Our thoughts and our reflections.
What science says
Scientific studies have shown that writing reduces the activity of that part of the brain that is activated when we are subjected to situations of fear and severe stress, even can have beneficial effects on the immune system as it positively influences our way of thinking and, indirectly, helps our psychophysical response.
Is it better to use a pen or a PC?
There is no doubt, to enjoy the benefits of writing it’s better to write by hand. It’s proven that writing to computers leads to being more synthetic, so you look at what you’re communicating in less detail. Writing by hand helps to remember information and preserve memories, all of which bring benefits to our brain. Writing by hand, for example, requires greater control of movement (the hand that holds the pen and the fingers that deter its movement on the paper) and of the thought that controls it. This activates a series of brain areas that, on the contrary, are not activated by the use of a keyboard.
Diary, my friend
Keeping a diary is a bit like having a friend who knows how to listen to us, collects our confidences, reworks them and gives us advice. But it should not be considered as an alternative for those who do not have a “real” friend with whom to share their thoughts, it is rather an “additional friend”, with him we can open ourselves without brakes, to him we can tell everything, even those darker parts of us that we might be afraid to reveal to others.
How to chose our diary
As when choosing the friend of the heart, for the choice of our diary you have to check the right conditions. A certain alchemy must be created that makes us understand that he, and only he, will be our ideal confidant to whom we’ll entrust our deepest thoughts and from whom (through a careful and critical reading) we will receive advice and observations.
How to keep a diary
Writing a diary is a way to take time for ourselves and to become observers of our life-changing perspective.
On a diary we write our interests, our desires, we set the goals we would like to achieve, and in trying to make them clear we are also committed to imagining a plausible strategy to achieve them. Let us clarify to ourselves what we would like to achieve and define a path to reach it. Once all these things are put on paper, our possible laziness or reluctance to engage will become difficult to justify it in our eyes, with the effect of pushing us to act constructively.
As we write we must make an effort to turn our thoughts into words that represent them and give them meaning, This process helps us to clarify our thoughts and confront them by seeing them in a new light. It allows us to have a more lucid and detached view of the situation we are telling.
It’s definitely a great outlet for anxiety and anger, but it’s not just that, and we don’t necessarily have to write about problems or inner travails that oppress us.
An interesting thing can be to periodically establish a list of objectives and check them once we have reached them so as to verify whether we know to be constant in our ideas and if we are able to put into action a behavior effective to achieve our goals.
Reread, a valuable opportunity
The use of the diary is not limited to writing. Indeed, we can say that writing is only a first step, preparatory to what is the real purpose of the diary: the moment when, after more or less time, we will reread what we have written.
Of course, the longer we have kept our diary and the more constantly we have devoted ourselves to it, the more useful and complete the reading can be.
It will be then that we review our moods with the necessary detachment to look at them more clearly and from a new perspective. We will realize what our recurrent moods have been at a certain time, what has made us sick and what has made us happy. We will reread what our wishes and hopes were and we will understand whether or not we were able to achieve them. We can also try to understand what prevented us from achieving them, and work on this to reverse the course and succeed where we had previously failed.
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