Therapeutic writing — sometimes called expressive writing, writing for wellbeing, or creative writing for therapeutic purposes (CWTP) — is as varied as the writer’s imagination. It can take the form of poetry, prose, dialogues or journal writing. The writing can include art, and may be prompted by memory, objects, music, nature, or other poems—in fact, absolutely anything that gets you writing expressively and authentically. It is not at all about producing something publishable, it is about the process, or journey.
Sometimes, writing something that seems quite straightforward when you’re writing it, can take on an emotional charge when you read it aloud, or back to yourself. Hearing your own words from a different perspective can be powerful and cathartic. Even the simplest of writing tasks can uncover memories and emotions that have escaped the cognitive radar for years. I speak from experience!
There is a growing body of evidence which has proven that therapeutic writing can promote healing, prevent illness, help to resolve grief and past trauma, improve the immune system and improve and promote wellbeing.