When Writing Becomes A Healing Power Of Discovery

Writing is an inside job and can, therefore, unfold healing, almost therapeutic powers. Explore how writing shifts your awareness towards the journey of self-discovery.
Carolyn Ziel is a holistic coach and writer.
healing through writing
Carolyn Ziel is a holistic coach and writer.

Writing coach Carolyn Ziel inspiringly reflects upon the therapeutic effects writing can have on the mind. When working with her clients, Carolyn keeps coming across the gentle ways of healing through writing.

Healing Through Writing: Letting The Subconscious Mind Speak

Sometimes it sneaks up on me.

I could be writing about my morning. About how cool it is and how I’m hoping fall is here and will stay. But before I even start the next sentence a memory taps my shoulder. I think about a time when I was a kid. About the raked piles of autumn in my front yard. Piles of yellow and brown and rusty red. Piles of earthy dampness. My sister and I would dive into them. Toss the leaves up in the air and watch them float down to the grass.

It surprises me sometimes. My thoughts. My subconscious mind and how she sneaks in, between my words. When I read back what I’ve written, whether I like where it’s going or not, I appreciate the words. I appreciate how they make me feel and what they make me remember. I appreciate what they show me about myself.

Writing focuses the mind. Writing is something you do alone—an inside job. And when we sit down to write, we’re quieting the mind. You focus on the words much in the same way you focus on your breath or a mantra during meditation.

“I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear” — Joan Didion

You write your story, you release the pain, anger, grief, and the other emotions that no longer serve you. You have taken them from your body and moved them to the page. You write your life and become the narrator of your story. The narrator is separate from the writer. The narrator is a character in your story. And as the writer, you have the power to change your story.

Read more: Explore the practice of cutting energy cords to let go of attachments that no loner serve you.

You get to decide who you want to be. You release old memories and past hurts, you walk away from them and then you can re-write your life. And if you wish, like my client Nina, you can turn it all into art.

Read more: Writing might also be great tool for you to start noticing, healing and freeing your inner child—learn more about the inner child concept.

All you need is paper and something to write with. But the results of having written are impactful. The insights gained. The uncovering of buried thoughts, buried feelings, buried treasure!

How Writing Teaches You About Yourself

When you look back at what you’ve written as a witness, without judgment, you can gain life-changing insights into your habits and patterns.

“I’ve never had this kind of deep awareness about myself.” My client Julie said to me after she noticed that she kept writing the same types of things over and over.

Her characters hold back from their feelings. They look outside at the world around them. They sit on benches waiting for busses noticing the intricate details of people as they walk by. They sit at their desks looking out the window and wonder about the lives of strangers as they drive by in their cars.  Her characters don’t write about their own feelings, but instead focus on what is going on around them, outside of themselves.

“I’m like that, I shy away from what I’m feeling,” Julie said. She was sitting across from me, leaning forward in her seat. Her brown eyes open a little bit wider than usual. Her lips formed a small oh. “I think that’s why it’s so hard for me to access my deeper voice in my writing.” She said. She shook her head. “In my life too. I shut down. I don’t like to feel my feelings. I mean the difficult ones.”

Writing Transforms

Many of my clients laugh, they joke and call writing therapy. Especially my newer clients, those not used to writing in their deep authentic voice. It is a form of therapy. Believe me, I’m no shrink, but I bear witness to my clients’ revelations. It is the journal, the freedom to write anything on the blank page, an open mind, an open heart and the permission you give yourself that creates a container large enough to hold all that you think and feel and write. That and your willingness to be an explorer.

Read more: In another article, Carolyn explains the unfolding  transformational benefits of writings. Also explore her guided meditations created for your creative process — find more of Carolyn Ziel’s meditations in our app:

  1. Mindfulness In Your Creative Practice Carolyn Ziel 10:36
  2. Surrendering To Your Creative Process Carolyn Ziel 10:41
  3. Let's Set An Intention: To Be Love In The Room Carolyn Ziel 10:01

How To Start Your Healing Writing Journey To Self-Discovery

Because writers are adventurers. They’re explorers on a journey to the truth. Writing is a vehicle of discovery. A way to find your authentic voice. To look inside yourself and tell the story of your life and discover the truth of who you are. How deep you’re willing to swim and how honest you’re willing to be—that is up to you.

These steps can help you to start experiencing the power of healing through writing:

  1. Start with just 10 minutes of journaling a day. Don’t think of anything to write about, just write. Don’t try to be fancy or ‘right’, just write. Just write and see where you arrive.
  2. Notice how you feel as you sit down in front of the blank page. And how you feel while you’re writing and how you feel when you’re done writing. Try writing about that.
  3. Then, keep writing. Create a new habit. Maybe it’s every day. Maybe you rest on Sundays. Maybe you write every other day. But start somewhere. Writing can become your kind of meditation practice—explore the best time to meditate (or write) that fits your needs and schedule.
  4. And then, notice some more. Take note of how you feel in a few days, in a few weeks, a few months. Check-in, see what’s changed. What you’ve let go of. What you have learned about yourself. And then you can write about that. There is always something to write about.

We handpicked these creativity igniting music tracks to accompany your healing through writing practice:

  1. Music For Inspiration & Creativity Daniel Bellone 21:20
  2. Nourish Your Creativity & Intuition Yuval Ron 1:00:44
  3. The Art Of Discovery | 329.9Hz Listening To Smile 10:10
  4. Sacral Chakra (feat. Pandit Nayan Ghosh) Yuval Ron 10:04

Writing, like anything worth mastering in life, is a practice. You write. You notice. You pay attention. You learn, grow, receive insight, let go, allow yourself to be healed by your own words. Then you write again. 

Meditation. Free.