Mindful moment… Make an appointment with Doctor Diary
Many of us associate keeping a diary with Adrian Mole and teenage years - but a growing body of research is suggesting that we could all benefit from expressing our feelings in a journal.
A new study from the University of Arizona found that keeping a journal after a divorce not only helped people to emotionally make sense of the experience and move forward, it resulted in lower heart rate and higher heart rate variability - which are both associated with better health.
In a book called Opening Up by Writing it Down, Dr James W. Pennebaker argues that expressive writing can boost our immune system, lower blood pressure, and improve sleep - it can even help wounds to heal more quickly.
The theory is that by writing, you express and put some structure and organisation onto anxious feelings, which in turn reduces stress and the physical impact on your body.
So what are we waiting for? It's time to get in touch with that old pen pal. Dear Diary...
* Marianne Power is the author of helpmeblog.net