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Writing is Right Back
Keeping a journal as a senior is one way of keeping your memories alive and your brain sharp. Writing is a way for seniors to express themselves and be open in their thought process. It doesn’t matter if anyone even reads what is written but putting pen to paper is important. It is a tool for their brain to recall one’s history and something that may make them proud of reading and sharing. When one writes they are exercising their brain. Writing improves cognitive functions and will help with memory loss acting as a tool for thinking and creativity. It is a wonderful outlet for people of all ages. There is evidence that the act of writing leads to strong physical and mental health benefits. It helps with improvements in mood, stress levels and depressive symptoms.
Improves Cognitive Functions
Writing is a challenge, requiring you to frequently tap into parts of your brain that aren’t always exercised. Working on a creative project in general is also good for strengthening the connections between brain cells, which often decline with age, contributing to memory loss. Writing is also a great way to practice expanding your vocabulary, a great way to learn and keep your mind healthy.
Helps Communication Skills
If you are shy or just quiet by nature, writing can help you discover a new voice and actually give you more confidence when communicating with others. By boosting your self-esteem and self-confidence you will find it’s easier to carry on a conversation with those around you. Writing can also help you communicate to others through your work. Don’t be afraid to share what you’ve written with others as showing your work is a great way to make new connections with those around you.
Provides an Outlet for Emotions and Stress
Writing is known for its therapeutic properties, which is why it’s often recommended that seniors keep a journal to document their thoughts and emotions, particularly after the loss of a loved one, or another major life change, such as relocating to an independent or assisted living community. Having a safe outlet for expressing your feelings can help limit the harmful effects stress can have on the mind and the body.
James W. Pennebaker has conducted research on writing at the University of Texas at Austin. “When people are given the opportunity to write about emotional upheavals, they often experience improved health.” Pennebaker writes. “They go to the doctor less. They have changes in immune function.”
So, get your pen and paper out and start writing! Enjoy yourself and feel better all at the same time! Happy Writing!