- Copertina flessibile: 249 pagine
- Editore: Guilford Pr; Rep Sub edizione (8 agosto 1997)
- Lingua: Inglese
- ISBN-10: 1572302380
- ISBN-13: 978-1572302389
- Peso di spedizione: 386 g
The bulk of Opening Up deals with the way in which writing (or verbalizing) the details of and emotions surrounding people's most traumatic (and occasionally most positive) life experiences can affect well-being. It is fascinating to learn how interconnected the mind and body actually are, and how effective the act of putting one's experiences into words can improve people's quality of life, or conversely how expressing the wrong kinds of feelings or expressing them inappropriately can do just the opposite. This book makes a quick yet intriguing read as Dr. Pennebaker expresses his observations in a way easy for the layperson follow and confines his notes to the end of the book so the reader is not distracted from the flow of the text.
That said, I have to add that the final chapter, "Beyond Traumas: Writing and Well-Being", seems superfluous. Diverse topics such as the use of in-class writing, note-taking, and the teaching of reading and writing to pre-school children are brought into the discussion and seem to have nothing but a tenuous connection to the rest of the book. These topics may have been better left out rather than brought up at the last minute and not really discussed at enough length to warrant their inclusion.
While the conclusion takes away from the book, I would still encourage anyone who is interested in psychology in general or the mind-body connection in particular to pick this book up.
I do have one caveat to make and it is directed to those who are under the impression that this book is a self-help book. While the subtitle, The Healing Power of Expressing Emotions, leads to potential reader to think that this book will show them how to use writing to heal themselves, this is not the case. If you are looking for a book to direct you I would recommend something like Louise deSalvo's Writing as a Way of Healing as a companion to this volume. deSalvo's book is largely based on Dr. Pennebaker's research but offers concrete advice on how someone looking to begin a writing practice could start out, providing exercises and checklists to ensure that the writing experience is beneficial to the writer.
If you've kept a journal and written about what troubles you, you know how much this unloading can improve your mood. It's nice to have someone listen to you, or to have the compassionate attention of a paid therapist who can help you see your patterns. But it's also comforting to know that science has shown that journaling can be a way for you to be your own therapist. In this book, the author shares stories of people and their writing. This is a good book to point to if anyone thinks journaling is just narcissistic scribbling.
~~Joan Mazza, psychotherapist and author of DREAM BACK YOUR LIFE; DREAMING YOUR REAL SELF; WHO'S CRAZY ANYWAY? and 3 books in The Guided Journal Series with Writer's Digest Books/Walking Stick Press.