Overcoming Diary

  •  July 8, 2020

To overcome a relationship, the recommendations are several. But not all avoid suffering. A new study may help. To repair the broken heart, write about the relationship.

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A trip, a radical diet, a new bag.

There are several ways to get over the end of a novel.

Or at least try.

Now science can help lighten the weight of this feeling.

Practicing written narrative improves heart rate and heart response to stress.

This is what a study from the University of Arizona (United States) reveals.

In it were evaluated 109 adults (70 women and 39 men), all newly separated.

Participants had to do writing exercises on three occasions over several days.

One group performed a traditional expressive writing task.

The instructions recommended writing freely about your "deepest and deepest emotions."

Another group performed narrative writing.

Here they had to create a coherent and organized plot of their separation experience.

The third group was given an emotionally neutral writing assignment.

Indicators of the body's cardiovascular responses to stress were compared before and after.

As a result, those who did the narrative writing exercise had a reduction in heart rate.

And an increase in Heart Rate Variability (HRV).

Higher HRV reflects better parasympathetic nervous system reactions to stimuli, including stress.

And separation is a stressful event.

So much so that it's linked to the increased risk of long-term decline in physical and mental health.

Writing about what happened can be a way to reduce the impact of the breakup.

"The ability to create a structured narrative - not just reliving emotions but making sense out of them - lets you process feelings in a more adaptive way."

The explanation is from one of the authors, Dr. Kyle J. Bourassa.

"Which can in turn help improve your cardiovascular health."

The study was published in the scientific journal Psychosomatic Medicine: Journal of Biobehavioral Medicine.