Writing Through Recovery

The healing power of writing has long been known, but in recent years more people have discovered this expressive art and are practicing it for a number of reasons. Some people write in a journal every day as a form of reflection and relaxation, while others write fiction or poetry because their 9-to-5 jobs don’t allow for creative expression. For addicts, the power of writing can help to heal the mind and spirit after drugs and alcohol have battered them. Groups are popping up around the country to help addicts use writing as a tool for recovery, but individuals can also express themselves in writing and strengthen their recovery as a result.

Writing For Healing

Writing Through Recovery - ChristianDrugRehab.comWriting has long been known as a healing process. The act of putting thoughts and feelings down on paper can help anyone to sort through the complexities of internal life. For an addict in recovery, that internal life is more chaotic than complex, and writing can help.

Journaling every day can help an addict bring some sense of meaning and order to what she has been through with her disease. It isn’t easy to begin with, to put difficult emotions and past experiences down in print, but doing so is often cathartic.

Many organizations encourage writing as a part of the addiction healing process. More than ever before, recovery groups are seeing the benefits of writing for patients and are including it as a part of a recovery program. Some of these programs revolve around writing as a healing tool for recovery, while others use it only as a supplement.

Some use guided instruction for writing and others encourage the practice in a free-form manner. And writing is not restricted to addiction recovery. Eating disorder groups also promote writing as a path to wellness and provide patients with instruction and guidance in writing for healing.

Sharing With Others

When addicts write about their experiences, their feelings and their fears, the healing potential is great. This kind of writing is very personal and for many it remains an individual pursuit. For those who are brave enough to try it, sharing these personal stories can be another step in the healing process. Social support has long been an important part of recovery and one aspect of support is to share and to listen. Opening up to other people in a safe environment can help an addict feel a sense of release.

Letting go of difficult feelings of addiction helps to heal, and one group in Kansas City is encouraging recovering addicts to do just that. The program is called Recovery Reading and is hosted by a writing group in the city. Addicts break the silence of their disease by reading their works, or letting someone else read for them, to a group of compassionate listeners. Most of these participants create poems that express their experiences with addiction and recovery and then share them in an evening of poetry reading.

For addicts, writing is a tool for healing and recovery. The act of writing is creative and personal. To express both emotions and to memorialize experiences with pen and paper is a powerful way to strengthen the process of recovery, to clear the mind, to bring order to the chaos of the disease of addiction and to help addicts reach the ultimate goal of long-term sobriety.

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