What is Memoir Therapy?

Stories are Sacred – it is an art that shows our humanity, the strengths and weakness. Now with advancements through psychology, narrative-medicine, therapeutic expressive writing, we can blend in the scientific knowledge as well.

Memoir therapy, is a subset and a combination of talk therapy with a writing system to find the driving force of your life’s story. We use structured examination of your:

  1. major life events,
  2. Carl Jung’s Archetypes roles
  3. emotions

End goal is to achieve self-discovery and eventually bring unique knowledge (The Elixir) to helps others as well.

The whole process can be divided into five stages:

  1. Pre-Writing
  2. Writing
  3. Post-Writing
  4. Post-Publishing
  5. Sharing

  1. Pre-Writing: This is the time, when you are first thinking about writing a book to the time you decide to sit down and do something about it. On an average, a person waits three years before deciding to get this started. There is a lot of concern about:
  • Re-opening old wounds
  • How people would react to your story, or maybe even worse: not react at all
  • What your family will say and the awkwardness that will ensue
  1. During Writing: If you decide to accept the adventure of getting your memoir penned, then there are two main factors of memoir therapy you will be busy with:
  • Remembering how the events took place and reviewing in correspondence with Hero’s life
  • Evaluating your emotional transitions

On an average this phase lasts 2 years, unless a ghostwriter or a book writing coach is involved. This speeds up the process through accountability and effective project management.

  1. After Writing: There is a lot of relief, as if a burden has been lifted off the shoulders.

Another positive side effect is ability to re-review your life from an emotionally detached point-of-view. It is this neutral perspective that converts the coveted goal into manifestation.

Norma Burdett, author of Blame the Tornado, summed up the “self-review effect” succinctly: When it is being written you are the author. When you read through it you are a reader and kind of on the outside looking in.

  1. Post Publishing: The sense of accomplishment is achieved and your sense of freedom from old emotional gunk is experienced on a higher level.
  2. During Sharing: Technically, this is the book marketing phase, but since memoirs are more personal, rather than an extension of your business if you have one, it is best to term this as a “sharing phase”. Here you will get to meet people that you didn’t know would like your courage to tell the story. They maybe have gone through the same trials in life as you. They might be a handful or might be into thousands, enabling you to feel part of a special “tribe”. As humans, our pain unites us.

In a nutshell, clients find numerous personal epiphanies and A Ha! moments, and the overarching sentiment is that from vulnerability comes strength. Why is being vulnerable important? Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. It allows us to share those things which have hurt us, and feel compassion in the act of sharing. A recent set of studies calls this phenomenon “the beautiful mess effect.”

Although this process can provide psychological relief through combining evidence-based solutions, it is neither a substitute for a physician’s consultation, nor a prescription to a specific ailment.

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