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  • Writer's pictureDr. Randi Gray


In general, writing can be a helpful coping skill and practice. One important element that I like to discuss with journaling is that you give yourself permission to get rid of what you just wrote.

This could be an email or document you type out and then delete. This could be pages you fill with words but then tear up or burn to get rid of them. The practice of journaling or writing can help your body let go of some of what is rumbling around in there, and then getting rid of the writing can take that letting go a step further if that is what you need.

There are so many options for journaling and writing:

  • Some journals give prompts for different objectives

  • There are phone and tablet options

  • There are online options

  • There are blank paper journals

  • And many more

The goal is to find a journaling application that works best for you and then use it often, consistently, and regularly.

Journaling is a healthy and helpful tool to move emotions and thoughts
Journaling is a healthy and helpful tool

Journaling or writing can offer a tool that I refer to as up and out. Various things come up in our bodies daily. If we don’t have a tool to move those thoughts, feelings, and experiences, they can layer, compress, and compound. That layering process generally results in adverse outcomes and symptoms such as increased anxiety, frustrations, depression, or a decrease in our overall functioning.

When we have a way to notice something come up and then move it out of our bodies, onto the paper, and then get rid of the paper, we have an up-and-out tool. So find a type of journaling or writing that makes sense to you and start your up-and-out practice. Scribbling, dump list, and color dump list are other up-and-out tools that can be used daily to keep us from compressing and compounding adverse experiences, thoughts, and emotions.

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