Can Journaling Be Helpful to Those in Addiction Recovery?

Woman journaling to help addiction recoveryMuhammad Ali, American professional boxer, activist and philanthropist, once stated,

“It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out, it’s the pebble in your shoe.”

Everyone – whether in addiction recovery or not – has struggles to work through. It’s part of human nature and it’s something we have to learn to work through by taking it one day at a time. Addiction recovery in particular requires not just treatment for addiction, but also love and support for the mind, body and spirit. We all have so many memories, traumas and experiences that have weighed heavily on our hearts – and as fragile human beings, this affects us greatly. Recovery is a chance for us to open up our mind and soul to learn more about ourselves, others and the world as we know it.

Journaling has been used for many years as a way to gain perspective on life, or even to release what has been holding us down. If we try to hold in all of what’s been bothering us, we may find that we’re more stressed, exhausted and irritated than if we were to release what we’re feeling out on a piece of paper. Self-expression is incredibly important; in 2016, a review titled “No Matter How You Word It, It’s for Me” listed several self-expressive assignments that those in recovery can write on their own:

  1. A letter to their inner child
  2. A letter written to their body, as a form of peace treaty or amendment
  3. A letter written to their addiction, whether in the form of what they miss, what they despise, the pain that addiction has caused them or something similar
  4. Daily journaling about thoughts and feelings that come up throughout the day

Journaling can be a formal or informal practice, but it can truly open our perspective to life and our overall purpose. If you’re contemplating journaling, find an empty sheet of paper and start writing. You don’t have to have a prompt – just see what spills out onto the page.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.

Call us today at 1-800-646-9998 to take the next step towards your happiness and health.