Writing is one of the tasks that require creativity, planning, brainstorming etc. Using them all together to create something unique, something beautiful might help a person with depression. When I started writing, it gave me a relief, a way out of my depression and it helped me fight depression without using antidepressants.
When a person is in depression, he or she loses interest in daily life, hobbies, work and almost everything. For me, things that I loved became truly meaningless. I used to love camping for instance. Last year I went camping just to remember how it felt. And I did not leave my tent for two days. When this is the case, a person with depression should hold on to anything that gives the slightest piece of pleasure. Writing might be one of those things that give great pleasure to an individual.
Of course, writing doesn’t have to be a personal thing. As I see from people around me, they usually tend to write about themselves instead of getting creative. When you start writing about yourself only, things might get complicated and as you spend time alone with your thoughts, you can actually hurt yourself.
Imagine this; you are expecting to help yourself by writing. You start writing about yourself but don’t forget that you are a person with depression. So you focus on every bad thing in your life. You write pages about your failures, about everything that makes you depressed because your brain blocks all the good things in your life. It makes you forget how you used to enjoy life. You remember how you let your family down. You remember how you lost everything you loved. This kind of writing is not creative writing and in my opinion, it does not help an individual with depression.
Now, imagine this. You like writing and decided to start a blog. You write different types of content. You write poems, short stories, critics… You use your brain actually to create something. Your thoughts begin to move away from yourself and focus on your imagination.
Let me talk about my experience now. When I first realized that I needed professional help with my mood (I did not know about my depression), I started writing. I wrote as if I was talking to a psychologist. I tried to make it look like a short story but it didn’t work. It was all about me and my life only. There was no way of using my creativity. In the end, it didn’t help me get better. It only made me realize that I needed help.
This was, bad or good, a start for me. After that point I kept writing and eventually I got to a stage where I could write about life, world, without thinking about myself. I started writing poems and shared a few of my poems on Allpoetry and received nice comments. Allpoetry.com is a website where you can share your poems and comment on others’. This led me to stay active, create something new everyday and get them reviewed by others.
Sharing is vital because it is the one thing that will boost your self-confidence. When people begin to comment on your poem, story, post etc. you will want to keep going.
Creative Writing helps an individual with depression by;
- Boosting self-confidence
- Giving a reason to leave the bed
- Forcing to think and get creative
- Helping to get socialize with people with same interest
- Making yourself feel valuable again by creating something useful for others
Writing about self can cause harm for an individual with depression because;
- Gives more time to think about self-failures
- Doesn’t require creativity and brainstorming
- People with depression tend to focus on bad things in life only
- Requires more time spent alone