Sunday, May 06, 2007

If You Want to Heal, a Healing Journal May Help

Illnesses such as cancer are usually chronic diseases that patients have to learn to live with. These diseases can strike terror in patients' hearts as they come face to face with their mortality. In this country, we have many resources to manage most of the cancers and other chronic diseases if they are diagnosed early. The usual treatment with surgery, radiation or medications may control the diseases or keep them at bay for a long time. Though medication or other treatments may be available the body's ability to heal is also important.

In patients with HIV who are diagnosed in the advanced stage, the immune system is usually destroyed by the virus and hence medications are less effective. This shows that the immune system is important for healing. The therapies for our diseases work only when our immune system is intact. When we are scared we can help ourselves by decreasing stress through spirituality, adequate nutrition and exercise. Journaling can be used as a path to spirituality, self discovery and to come to terms with what matters in our life.

"In the 1950's a former student of Carl Jung and psychoanalyst Ira Progoff hit a rough time in his life. Separated from his wife, and suffering from strain, he began keeping a journal as a way to express himself and alleviate the stress. However he found it did so much for him…It helped him put his problems in proper perspective and in some cases guided him toward solutions to his problems. In other instances he found a way of dealing with them. As a result he reduced his stress level and experienced emotional healing.

He immediately recognized how the journal could help his patients, and so he encouraged them to keep diaries. He wanted them to explore ideas, thoughts and dreams within their journals, no matter how strange or off the wall they may have seemed. He wanted them to recount their emotions in certain situations and then give themselves feedback on these feelings. Using the journals as tool, his patients quickly found the power within themselves to heal psychologically. The journal gave them the means and the space to sort things out, to see things."

Joan R. Neubauer - In "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Journaling."

The benefits of journaling include decreased stress, improved immune system and an outlet to vent and come to terms with your disease. It also gives the patient chance to restructure his thoughts and attitudes towards his disease and come face to face with reality. He may then be able to approach his condition with mindfulness and peace of mind that may give his body chance to heal.

The Journal may be written on paper or on the computer using Microsoft Word or on the Internet. The Internet has many places you can write your journal. One easily available place you can write is any of the free blog hosting platforms. I like Google's free blogger platform. You can write and not make it public so you're the only one who will be able to view it. On the other hand you can register with a different name and open it to the World Wide Web as your writing may help someone. Take the first step and start your writing now.

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