Writing for Therapy – Introduction Blog 2 of 6

Pick up a pen

What’s the difference between Creative Writing and Writing for therapy? It is one of the same in many ways.

Writing for Therapy is not directed at a market, or writing purely for pleasure, it is about using words to analyze and plan. Your words can be a basis for discussion with a friend or in a group.

Writing things down – fact or fiction can help.

Teaching Writing for Therapy is about individuals. In this introduction it is not possible to tailor it to individuals. I can’t slow down, go faster, or stop and listen. Please remember that this is an introduction.

Exercise 2

This is about word association directly not like the creative word association in the first lesson.

Write a word you are contemplating regarding a problem then write as many words as you like, that you associate with it. It is better to write quickly rather than taking time to think. When you have your words take the word that you think is the most important one and the then the word you think is least important and do the exercise again based on these words.

You will see how you have broken a situation down into small parts. Now make at least one constructive plan based on your words. Try to write and add to a ‘can do’ something about, list of words. There are things none of us can do anything about, but look for the can do’s.

Seeing something written down and broken into small parts is all that is needed in a number of situations. A guide of a time schedule for doing things can be constructive, without being too rigid.

You can see how sharing your words should encourage others in a group or a friend or group member can add helpful comments for you. I could suggest a list of topics and situations where this exercise could be used, but that would take pages and pages. This is starting list – add more: Dieting, relationships, growing up and growing older, finances,being abused, time management etc……..

Next week it is about sharing and I will include some case histories without mentioning names.

Reading and writing fiction can take you out of yourself in the way that listening to music or doing anything creative can do. Having something written down can help focus on where to go from a starting point. Make noes can materialise into a plan over a period of time.

At the end of group Writing for Therapy sessions there is an opportunity to  share and encourage, or sit in silence.

Case history;

A family had financial problems. Every member wrote a creative word association then went on to write a direct association and discussed the possibilities. A plan was made. Everyone kept a diary and they were on a  journey to get a grip on expenditure. Writing for Therapy was more constructive than arguing.

Writing things down can expand the picture.

Next Week – Sharing and poetry. More  case histories.

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