If you can feel, you can write

September 25, 2015Carlana Charles

We make so many of our experiences in life physical. Often, we need to be able to touch, hold, see something to acknowledge or make them real. That said, it’s no wonder why so many of us suppress our emotions. We fail to honor them, acknowledge them and recognize them as real because they are not tangible or visible. Emotions are a powerful driving force. Without them, it becomes difficult for us to have varying experiences and feel the highs and lows of life. They are a normal part of our being and add a unique dimension to our life.

I’ve long recognized that suppressing and ignoring my emotions ALWAYS work against me. It’s like the very process of trying to ignore or invalidate them, causes them to grow as they seek my attention. One of the questions I get as I work with people who are skeptical about the therapeutic potential of writing is just how do they go about addressing the things they carry within – feeling, emotions, etc. My answer is always the same – if you can feel it, you can write about it. The simplicity of this generally blows folks away. I don’t know if it is because we’ve been conditioned to believe that anything that can improve our better our lives must come the hard way. It almost seems too simple for some. But when they do start to write, it’s like an avalanche of feelings and suppressed emotions emptied on paper.

In great part, I credit the existence of this site on the healing properties of writing. I found writing one day many years ago when I was in an abusive marriage. One day, at the hilt of my frustration and pain I grabbed a pen and a journal and emptied out the things I carried within – the pain, the secret shame, the things I did not feel I could trust to share with others. I’ve been writing ever since and experiencing the benefits of it. What I came to eventually learn is that we don’t just heal from prayer, therapy or even talking about the pain. We heal when we write. I’ve proven this in my life and countless others can attest to it. Over the past year, I’ve read countless books and blogs on the therapeutic power or writing. One thing is certain, there’s something that happens when we pen our pain, fears, shame, insecurity, and troubles in an authentic way. We gain perspective, clarity, and solutions for moving forward and of course, an outlet.

When so many things have been buried for so long you may ask yourself just what do I address first. I always start with what comes immediately to mind or what you may be feeling at that time, at that moment. Ask yourself what am I feeling? Then write down what comes up, write them out until you feel like you’ve released it all. Write from a place of openness and honesty, after all, your words are for your eyes only. Don’t worry about trivial things like handwriting and forget about spelling and writing mechanics, just write with the view of emptying out and addressing those things that weigh on your mind, those things you suppress, those things that keep you up at night. And don’t be surprised that if after you’ve done these things you feel physically lighter because oftentimes the things we carry deep within eventually weigh on us as physical weights do.

If you need a bit of hand-holding with addressing your emotions or want to see how writing can improve your outlook and perspective on the things you’ve gone or maybe go through, check out my services or get in touch with me.

Comments (24)

  • Erica

    October 6, 2015 at 4:09 pm

    This was excellent post about the benefits of journaling. I have been considering do something similar to this-but keeping everything I need to remember and keep track of in my life all in one journal.

    1. Carlana

      October 6, 2015 at 7:36 pm

      Hi Erica. Thank you for the comment and please, do journal 🙂

  • Shann

    October 6, 2015 at 10:29 pm

    I totally think this is valid. My blog was born out of a need to write during a very hard time in my life. It is so therapeutic for me, plus it can help others going thru similar situations.

    1. Carlana

      October 6, 2015 at 10:39 pm

      Hey Shann – it’s amazing how tough times can bring out the writer in us. It really gives perspective and is very therapeutic and cathartic. Thanks for stopping by!

  • Kemkem

    October 21, 2016 at 11:33 am

    I’ve always loved to write. In my younger days, l wanted to be the next Jackie Collins or Harold Robbins 🙂 . It’s amazing how much you discover about yourself when you have it written down. It helps you grow and learn. Yep..if you feel, you can write. Well said!

    1. Carlana

      October 23, 2016 at 1:43 pm

      It’s so true. Writing aided greatly in my self-discovery.

  • Antoinette

    October 23, 2016 at 2:02 am

    Journaling has always been therapeutic for me. I can write out whatever I want, pouring out all of my emotions without fear of judgement. There aren’t many other avenues in which we could do that.

    1. Carlana

      October 24, 2016 at 4:24 pm

      I can’t think of any other avenue that worked so well for me.

  • Stacie

    October 23, 2016 at 6:31 pm

    Writing things down can be so therapeutic. As a blogger, you words can often end up helping others too.

  • Sheri

    October 23, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    I have always loved to write but was always too shy to take a writing course to improve my writing. After losing two people that I loved including my mom, going through life’s pains and struggles, I realise that I had a lot of surpressed pain which was all coming up around the time I was about to give birth to my first child last year. After he was born I decided that he needed a mom who was fully there, open and in touch with her feelings, so I started writing, putting my feelings down and just expressing everything I felt when I felt it and needed to get it out. Long story short, this is what brought me to creating my blog. I don’t publish everything I write because I am not yet ready but I now know that happiness is a habit and I am working on myself daily. Writing has gotten me through some extremely tough days. I love this post, sorry for rambling on….

    1. Carlana

      October 24, 2016 at 4:23 pm

      You are not rambling! The comment is heartfelt and resonates with me. Best wishes and keep writing.

  • Tanya Barnett

    October 23, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    Writing i healing to my soul. I use it to communicate with my husband too.

  • Chante Burkett

    October 24, 2016 at 12:10 am

    it’s like a stress reliever i love to write

  • Latoya @ Life and a Budget

    October 24, 2016 at 12:36 am

    Writing is very therapeutic! It really does help you get through some trying times.

  • LaQuisha Hall

    October 24, 2016 at 1:18 am

    As a survivor of abuse, I fully endorse and agree with this post! Writing his been a tool that I have used to overcome a lot of adversity in my life.

    1. Carlana

      October 24, 2016 at 4:22 pm

      Yes, I discovered it during an abusive marriage so I definitely understand where you are coming from.

  • Eva

    October 24, 2016 at 5:45 am

    I hope to get my kids into the practice of journaling daiky. It really can gelp them to express themselves and get those feelings out.

  • Tiffany H.

    October 24, 2016 at 6:08 am

    I def believe writing is therapeutic. Its always interesting to look back over the things you wrote in the past..

    1. Carlana

      October 24, 2016 at 4:21 pm

      I’ve been doing a lot of looking back this past weekend. I am in awe of how much I’ve grown emotionally in the last couple of years and amazed at the many hurdles I’ve crossed.

  • Adeola Naomi

    October 24, 2016 at 9:27 am

    When I lost my grandma last year, I started journaling as a way to let it all out because I didn’t really want to talk or deal with the grief but I knew writing it all done will help me feel and grieve as I should.I totally believe in the therapeutic power of writing down what you feel.

  • Jonna

    October 24, 2016 at 11:09 pm

    I find that writing helps me to clear my mind and get out of my own head.

    1. Carlana

      October 26, 2016 at 3:28 am

      Yeah, it does the same for me.

  • Joanae

    October 25, 2016 at 9:45 am

    I write my best work when it’s not forced, and from the heart. I love this piece.

    1. Carlana

      October 26, 2016 at 3:26 am

      You’re welcome.

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