Looking for an emotional outlet? - This exercise can help
Do you remember the last time you wrote a handwritten letter to someone special? Seems like ages, does't it?
I was in my teen years when I wrote a personal letter to myself. I had to give myself a pep talk about how things have changed but everything was going to be fine. I wrote it and forgot about it. Just recently during all the Diwali while cleaning the loft I found it in one of the suitcases with some photographs.
That letter caught me by surprise. Today I’m a Psychologist and a coach but I get upset and impatient way too quickly but my younger self was free and quite confident about her life. Of course, she was naïve because life threw many curve balls after that. Nonetheless, I was so thrilled to read that letter.
I started writing letters again post my M Phil when I was trying to figure out certain changes in my life. I cannot tell you the ways in which writing letters helped me move on, stay strong, get closure and treasure memories.
I felt very strongly to write this blog post for you hoping this little practice will help you reap the benefits that I did.
Helps you to navigate your emotional life.
It’s like a blueprint of your thoughts and beliefs
You’re the only audience, which means it’s a private ritual
Helps you declutter the mind and relaxes the noise
Increases awareness toward self and your surrounding
Helps you preserve some great memories
It’s a log that can help you track your thought process after years
If you’ve written a letter to someone else you don’t necessarily have to send it
You become more expressive not just with yourself but also with others
It increases your level of empathy
Believe it or not writing letters to self has some incredible physical benefits, such as body positivity, body image.
Helps you let go of suppressed or hidden emotions you cannot express otherwise.
The type of letters you can write
Letter of apology (Forgiveness & Forgiving)
Letter of appreciation (Expressing Gratitude or complimenting)
Letter of Love (How much he/she means to you)
Letter of Empathy (I feel your pain)
Letter to a lost one (Just to say goodbye)
After you’ve written them just read it once. If you’ve written it to yourself, I highly recommend you keep it. Researchers say reading letters that we would’ve written to ourselves in the past tend to improve our decision making. Not to mention that the memory gives us.
There are no rules or a template that you have to stick to. This simple ritual can be practiced at any age or time. If you’ve written these letters to other people or your loved ones, you can choose to either send it or keep it or even tear it. That’s the best part about this practice is that it’s absolutely personal and each time you write it there’s just so much to say.
Sounds amazing right?