Journaling/Writing as Therapy

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Let’s face it, life gets stressful. Sometimes it can be little things and other times it is the big things that drive us nuts. I struggle with depression and it can be challenging to not breakdown over the smallest setback at times.

Life does not always play out the way we planned and that can be very painful or it can end up being a blessing. In order to keep myself sane or almost sane I began writing fanfiction a few months ago and have recently started journaling. Let me tell you, I think I found my therapeutic release in those pages!

I always joke with my significant other that you can always tell if I’ve had a bad day because someone is going to get hurt in my fanfiction! Writing has become a great release from frustrating and crippling depression. I would encourage anyone to grab a pencil and paper or tablet/pc and get to writing if you want to get some stress off our shoulders.

I’ve noticed that I’ve become more creative since I’ve started writing. I have started trying to draw as well since I really enjoyed art class when I was younger and it feels like this little creative person has begun showing herself little by little as the days go on. You almost feel like a child again, being able to imagine these fantastic worlds and scenarios!

I was afraid at first to post any of my writing online since I haven’t really written anything in a decade or more, but you get over it. I told myself if I got any really hateful comments that they can be deleted. Also, I try and remember that those who may make nasty comments could be going through their own tough times and find it easier to pick on me than dealing with their own issues. I have been fortunate so far and haven’t received any mean comments so I am thankful for that.

It was astonishing to me that my fingers just wouldn’t stop typing when I started to get an idea of a story in my head. I just kept going; for hours even! I was tired at the end of those long nights when I just had to get an idea out of me, but tired as I was, I felt absolutely amazing! It was like I had my own little therapist right there with me and I could talk (write) anything I wanted. I could make it murder story if I was feeling upset or I could make it a romantic story if I was feeling happy and hopeful.

Honestly, it doesn’t matter if you think you suck at writing..just give it a shot! Don’t worry about if anyone will like the story if you create one. Remember, you are writing for yourself! You don’t have to post it or show your writings to anyone if you do not want to. If you chose to post your entries or fanfiction/stories online, just remember that you are doing it for yourself and no one else. Ignore or delete unhelpful and mean comments. Be thankful for positive reviews and helpful critiques. It’s hard to get used to someone critiquing you, but it helps in the long run. You may find that you even make new friends through your writing, which can be therapeutic in its own right.

If you are interested in writing fanfiction, I would recommend using the Archive of Our Own (AO3) site. AO3 doesn’t have the best editing  forms for your stories but I’ve found the site to be extremely easy to use and visually appealing. The site also allows you to rate your work and put rating tags on it so you can warn others if it is an adult type story. Speaking of adult, AO3 does allow you to post adult stories as well and will not delete or ban accounts for them.

If you are interested in journaling and want to use an online program, I would recommend Penzu. This site automatically makes your entries private and they cannot be seen by anyone else. The site is also free to use, which makes it almost perfect in my book! Penzu also as a pro version you can purchase that gives you style options and military grade encryption. Check it out and see if you like it too!

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