Story-Telling Has Some Powerful Benefits on Your Mental Health! Find Out How!
Writing and story-telling have powerful mental health benefits and they can improve happiness, and creativity, and help us lead the way just how we may want to. Story-telling does not mean you have to delve deep and reveal your inner Mark Twain or Jane Austen. You can just tell stories or write stories and believe us when we say it, it offers a multitude of benefits. Let’s just say your brain will thank you for telling, listening, and sharing stories. Check out the benefits that you may never have thought of.
You become an active listener when you utilize all your senses and focus on the stories. Becoming a better and more active listener is one of the best social skills to possess. You also fortify your imagination as you read stories in books. Reading can also exercise your brain’s health and fitness. A good imagination can help beat life’s stressors more creatively.
When we watch a scary movie, our senses are attuned to Hollywood’s version of a story. During the entire course of the film, you are transported to an imaginary world. There are several people on board such as the writer, director, costume designer, production crew, and others who come together to create a story for us; it turns out to be a completely immersive experience.
Enables Memory Retention
When we hear a story we listen to the characters in a story, our brain releases a hormone called oxytocin. Oxytocin is linked with empathy, a building block that helps cement our relationships.
Apart from increasing empathy, storytelling can also improve memory. It is also said that people tend to remember information when it is set in narratives. It is 22 times more effective than just plain stark facts. That’s why when we follow a narrative, we are invested in the storyline and move along emotionally to reach the crescendo of the story. It’s the way the story is told that impacts us, not the dry facts.
Improves Positive Emotions
As per the recent research in positive psychology, weaving stories also controls our mood and self-image. Stories are uplifting experiences and can change our moods. This sudden change in mood and outlook is certainly a great thing. After facing a dark situation you have the flickering of positive emotion and you end up feeling so much better; it can also help you cope better with adversity and how you meet the obstacles you face and everybody else. A study found that storytelling releases oxytocin and reduction in pain.
Helps People With Dementia
People with dementia have also benefited a lot by participating in community storytelling and therapy known as reminiscence therapy. Like many other creative arts such as music, storytelling can also aid the senior community members to tackle their memory issues. It is a positive tool in the psychologist’s tool to impact the subject/patient positively. Also, storytelling is very non-threatening, people get drawn to the web of storytelling without realizing that they are drawn to it.
Helps Us Build From Success and Failure
Changing your narrative in responding to both success and failure can have a very positive effect. In research on adolescents such as persistence and academic achievement, scientists found that new narratives can prove to be self-motivating.
Success narratives can remind people to achieve their goals. thereby also improving self-esteem and motivating them to pick themselves up when they are failing and get up and reach for the goals again.
While success narratives are powerful failure narratives too are equally powerful. When told in a new way, they can instill a feeling of appreciating their attempts and give themselves credit to maneuver through the challenges, and encourage them to be stronger than before and face challenges in the future.
The act of telling stories can connect to others, make meaning and bring more structure to our lives into a coherent narrative and immerse ourselves in not only our life stories but also the stories of others. It’s only when you are invested in others’ life stories that you move away from your own. Stories have the allure to bound you in a grip, so much so that you stop bothering about what is affecting you and make the journey to what is impacting others.
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