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Table of Contents
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 134-135

Pen down your emotions-for a better you

Tutor/Clinical Instructor, College of Nursing, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India

Date of Submission20-Apr-2021
Date of Decision06-May-2021
Date of Acceptance08-May-2021
Date of Web Publication21-Dec-2021

Correspondence Address:
Mr. Alwin Issac
College of Nursing, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhubaneswar, Odisha
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/iopn.iopn_30_21

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How to cite this article:
Issac A. Pen down your emotions-for a better you. Indian J Psy Nsg 2021;18:134-5

How to cite this URL:
Issac A. Pen down your emotions-for a better you. Indian J Psy Nsg [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 Aug 19];18:134-5. Available from: https://www.ijpn.in/text.asp?2021/18/2/134/332794


Being able to share our feelings and emotions appears to significantly trim down the negative physical and mental upshots of arduous life events. In this fast-paced world, wherein we live in an isolation or alienation from others, we put ourselves at stake.[1] Negative emotions can drag us down, especially when helplessness kicks in. Risks of grievous mental and physical problems awfully increase; the longer we pent up our emotions.[2]

Medical professionals work in a variety of settings, wherein they have a variety of interpersonal contacts. As they interact, they need to be quite conscious of own emotions and of others to ensure that it doesn't have any impact in each one's health. The cost of unresolved emotional upheaval takes a toll on caregiver. Although in many settings, employers support caregivers through highly qualified counselors, stigma is associated with seeking support. The stigma arises of a feel that it is in the same place wherein they have to work further.

Herein, the importance of nonsocial modes of expression such as writing comes to the forefront for all those who find it hard or constrained to share their emotions with others. Writing has been an effective strategy used in psychology with a view that writing could furnish an outlet for individuals to evince unpleasant emotions and psychological distress. Writing gives a safe, cathartic release valve that lets us pour out all the suppressed emotions and feelings. Engaging in writing provides a possibility to foster expressing self and improves organizational abilities in addition to observational and descriptive skills. These soft skills are pertinent to clinical thinking and medical practice.

  Significance for Nurses Top

The nucleus of nursing is to strive for improving patient's quality of life. This is usually attained by means of nonpharmacologic, psychobehavioral interventions such as writing. This can be performed when and where the patient chooses it to perform. By means of writing, patients engage in a cognitive process, reintegrating experience in life. By jotting down, individual can secernate meaning, share meaning, reach out to others, and define them.[3] This is speculative of the holistic nature of nursing.

Substantial rewards have been reported for such objective outcomes as students' scholastic performance, skipping work, and performance in extracurricular activities. It is also indispensable in social and linguistic behavior of those involved in writing about emotional topics. This kind of writing had significant and long-term improvements in illness-related visit to doctor, self-reported physical health ratings, immunity, grade point average, memory, and sporting performance.[4]

  How and What to Jot? Top

In accordance with the previous researches, those topics that involve shame or guilt are the most apt for disclosure, as these are the ones most often inhibited. Whatever is distressing to the individual can be chosen as a topic for writing. When writing, think of the deepest emotions associated with an event and write whatever comes into the mind, regardless of the spelling, grammar, or quantity. Writing even for four consecutive days for 20 min a day has produced significant effects in the life of individuals.[5]

Writing down our emotions actually gives us an insight of our inner self. No matter what the rewards of expressive writing, it should be used as a complement to standard treatment and should not replace apt medical or psychological interventions in clinical populations.

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Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

Holt-Lunstad J, Smith TB, Baker M, Harris T, Stephenson D. Loneliness and social isolation as risk factors for mortality: A meta-analytic review. Perspect Psychol Sci 2015;10:227-37.  Back to cited text no. 1
Smyth JM, Johnson JA, Auer BJ, Lehman E, Talamo G, Sciamanna CN. Online positive affect journaling in the improvement of mental distress and well-being in general medical patients with elevated anxiety symptoms: A preliminary randomized controlled trial. JMIR Ment Health 2018;5:e11290.  Back to cited text no. 2
Shen L, Yang L, Zhang J, Zhang M. Benefits of expressive writing in reducing test anxiety: A randomized controlled trial in Chinese samples. PLoS One 2018;13:e0191779.  Back to cited text no. 3
Baikie KA, Wilhelm K. Emotional and physical health benefits of expressive writing. Adv Psychiatr Treat 2005;11:338-46.  Back to cited text no. 4
Travagin G, Margola D, Revenson TA. How effective are expressive writing interventions for adolescents? A meta-analytic review. Clin Psychol Rev 2015;36:42-55.  Back to cited text no. 5


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