An underestimated yet effective healing practice
By Tania Arora, Staff Writer
The initial month of the lockdown passed somehow, although at a gradual pace. By the middle of it, my anxiety took over. Near the end, I was dying to reach out to a psychologist or therapist. I was in a funk that I would have traded a kidney to get out of.
I am glad I did not do that, and I am even more at peace to have discovered and calmed myself through therapeutic writing exercises. Since childhood, we have been told that journaling is a good habit. Pen your thoughts, goals, emotions, aspirations, tasks, plans, and literally everything and see the difference it makes. Discovering that writing can be therapeutic changed the trajectory of my mental illness.
The goal of graphotherapy is to modify our behaviour by improving our hand gestures consciously. It is used to produce mental changes and is done using graphical methods and exercises. A graphotherapist analyzes our current handwriting to study and analyze our mindset including our signature. The therapy is based on improving mental blockages through the lines and dots we make.
The exercises must be done for a 30 day stretch without fail. But it is essential to take them as per individual issues and after consulting a graphotherapist. They are tailored according to our individual minds.
I asked the hardest questions of myself. It is hard to speak up and accept certain things but writing it down is easier. I would draw strokes again and again till they turned out to be similar and satisfied me. It retrained my subconscious mind and took my attention off the things in life that do not serve the current purpose.
Writing once a week or month or year does not work. A continuous habit of finishing the recommended exercises must be made. The questions are so compelling that they poke every thought that we are trying to suppress in our minds and the strokes require our utmost attention.
Each one of us, I believe, has multiple types of handwriting strokes. We write differently when in a rush or when upset. We write in a completely opposite way when we are at peace. We make mistakes when confused. Our writing reflects the current state of our mind. If the connection is so strong that the graphotherapy exercises change the writing pattern at such a significant pace each time, then why can’t we use it in a reverse manner to balance our mental health?