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Creative Writing for Wellbeing by Clare Fisher Psychotherapist

After a long day of therapy, I told my daughter “I need to decompress, so I am going to do some writing”.

“How pretentious!” was her response, and she qualified this with “I can not think of anything worse than writing, I have to write for my English class at school and I wouldn’t do it in my own time”.

On reflection, I can identify with her stance, as I loathed writing at school due to the often uninteresting curriculum topics, the enforced deadlines, the specificness of the universal marking criteria and the confusing subjective critical feedback.

So why do I like writing now……. well it’s on my terms, it comes from an organic place, there are no expectations, no quality standards, no word count and I can take my time.

I can go down the rabbit hole and poke about without the looming shame of perceived failure.

For example, whilst I am writing this I am eating vegan Tropical Tots sweets and I have taken a few out and placed them in small rows on my desk. I have ordered them in colour and the status of yumminess. I will eat the orange and yellow ones first and save the higher value red and black ones till last. An exercise if you will in delayed gratification.

So back to why creative writing is important to my well-being; well it provides me with the freedom to safely express, explore and communicate what I believe and feel. It gives me a platform to reflect, process and dream.

In the mental health field, we support journalling, which is a great method to bring our unconscious thoughts to the forefront of our consciousness. It enables us to give our internal thoughts/feelings an external physical form which we can explore from different perspectives. These different perspectives can provide us with a safe distance from which to process our thoughts and can enable us to recalibrate our emotions and if needed modify our behaviours.

So what did I write to decompress after a long day in session with my wonderful clients?


Scotland's Stories is an annual writing project which aims to encourage all types of people to share their experiences. Every year we use a different theme to help people write about their lives, their way. The theme for 2023 is Adventure.

Adventure is the promise of a fresh start, the excitement of a new opportunity and the warm embrace of the familiar. It’s making time for our loved ones, getting lost in our imaginations or challenging ourselves to achieve something big.

From finding your feet in a new place, falling back into our most cherished memories, or simply deciding to strike out on a new path, our adventures – and who we choose to share them with – are deeply connected to our story, giving us a better sense of the world and our place in it.

So whether it's the adventure you treasure most or the one you've still to uncover, share your story with us today!

Get involved

This project is for everyone, even if you've never written before we'd like to hear from you. We believe everyone has a story worth telling and that telling that story can be a powerful, transformative experience.

Your entry can be in any form you like – a story, poem, comic strip, play or letter. We also accept video and audio entries.

We welcome entries in Gaelic, Scots and English.

Closing Date June 2023

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