how writing helps your brain

Writing has been a very old way of decluttering the mind. Even now, writing is done to help in effective communication. Earlier, people used to write with pen and paper. Now, with the advent of digitization, we have lost the art of writing the traditional way.

Writing has therapeutic effects on the brain and it can also help you enhance your memory. It helps you in neurological health. But our dependency on technology like iPhones, iPads, smartphones, even smartwatches has led the traditional way of writing to dust.

Tennessee Williams quote on writing

Now everything is recorded digitally. Even our thoughts are recorded digitally. Our daily to do’s, task lists, even the novels are written in digital format. It’s not bad, but if it goes by tradition, handwriting has many more benefits than typing.

Writing by hand has shown therapeutic benefits to the brain, enhancing the cognitive ability, including improvements in the symptoms of depression. In this article, we would be discussing 7 reasons why writing helps your brain and provide a therapeutic effect.

1. Goodbye Stress

Stress has taken a toll on the health, especially on the youth of today. Blame it on the highly competitive world out there, everybody is running at a faster pace.

When it comes to learning something, writing by hand vs. typing it out, learning is far better and long-lasting with the former i.e. writing by hand.                 

Writing by hand has a connection with the brain, rewiring it and thus calming it down. Typing it out may have benefits too, but they are often short-lived.

Even some of the traditional writers, authors out there still, write their first drafts on the paper first before taking them to the digital level.

Writing Exercise – If you feel stressed out, write “I am at peace” with hand and type it out twenty times a day maybe, and record the difference it makes. Do comment below on your observations.

2. Give Your Memory a Boost

Writing is something that can definitely help you retain more of the information you consume. This can be seen or rather felt by comparing the time when you were young and used to take down notes in your notebook rather than on your smartphone or laptop.

When you sit to write and practice it daily, you create new connections in the brain, as a result, you grow your memory muscle.

Writing Exercise – The next time you take a class or learn something new, try taking down notes by hand and some of the notes on your laptop/smartphone. Compare what all information you are able to memorize faster and able to retain. Do let us know your observations in the comments section below.      

3. Improving the Brain Efficiency

The killer of the effort is distractions. We are all easily distracted when we work on our electronic devices such as iPads, iPhones, tablets, laptops, etc. unless you are using some apps such as Freedom to keep you away from distractions while you are writing.

As a result, your efficiency reduces. On the other hand, when you try to write by hand, you are automatically rewarding yourself with no distraction resulting in better focus and efficiency.

Writing Exercise – Next time you sit to write something, do it on your laptop and with paper. Observe, by which method you were able to do it fast and efficient way with peace of mind intact. Do share your experiences in the comments section below.

Also Read – 10 Effective Ways to Overcome Writer’s Block

4.  Active Mind = Active Body

As compared to passive activities like swimming, walking etc. wherein you can allow your brain to wander aimlessly, writing involved making your brain focus on giving shape to your thoughts, choosing the right words, and working on forming a story or a context that makes sense.

Writing daily enhances brain activity and it remains engaged. Challenging your brain with writing exercises is similar to what you do to your muscles when you physically workout. Doing this writing exercise daily will strengthen your brain cells and improves the connection between them.

Writing Exercise – Starting today, write daily for the next 30 days. It doesn’t matter how much you write daily, just stick to a routine. Record your learning from this exercise and share your experience in the comments section below.

5. Cognitive Function Improvement

Writing helps improve your cognitive ability by logically thinking through matters. When you write with a pen and paper instead of typing, the cognitive function is enhanced.

When you are stressed, or you are aware that an event is going to happen which can be stressful, write. It has been shown in various studies that posttraumatic stress disorder is significantly reduced with writing.

Sylvia Plath quote on writing

Writing Exercise – Whenever you are stressed, write. Observe what you feel with and without writing. Record the differences. Do you feel relaxed with or without writing it down? Do share your experiences in the comments below.

6. Improved concentration

Writing enhances concentration. No matter what you are writing, maybe a book, an essay, an article, or even your thoughts, each of these requires undivided focus.               

As we are aware that the attention span of humans is reduced to even less than that of a Goldfish, it is important in writing. Writing not only improves your concentration and boosts your mental wellbeing, but it is also helpful in your overall psychological and physiological wellbeing. Like writing your thoughts out will help you in your emotional and spiritual wellbeing.

Writing Exercise – Try writing whenever you feel saturated with something or when you feel that you need to talk out something but there is no one to talk to. Feel the difference after you write it all down. Do comment on your experiences in the comments section below.

Also Read – 7 Different Types of Poetry to Write Better Poems

7. Brain Plasticity Gets a Boost

Our brains are magical. It forms new neural connections or pathways whenever it is exposed to new information. Now it’s important to strengthen the existing neural pathways, creating new ones is also as important. Writing seems to do that perfectly.

Regular, daily practice of writing helps build new neural networks inside the brain, thus improving the brain plasticity. So what are you waiting for? Indulge yourself in writing daily. Pick your favorite spot where you can write peacefully and daily sneak into the sweet spot with your notebook and write.

Conclusion

Whatever you do, writing does have magical effects when it comes to helping your brain and its therapeutic effect on the emotional, spiritual, psychological, and physiological well being. Writing boosts your brain activity and helps you in maintaining the power of your aging brain. Moreover, it really helps you in organizing your thoughts, giving a perfect structure to them, and helps you in your overall mental wellbeing. We hope these 7 reasons how writing helps your brain benefit you in improving your life.

When did you start writing? How does it feels when you write it all down? Do share your experiences in the comments section below!

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