Over the past few years, I have suffered from depression and anxiety. All the while, I have been a poetry enthusiast and I write in my spare time. After a session of writing, I felt tranquil and calm. This begs the question; does writing poetry benefit mental health?
Sad or depressive poetry, in my opinion, is great for venting out negative thoughts and feelings. It allows the writer to focus on the wording and integration of emotion in the poem, rather than the negative thoughts they have. It also allows others who read the poem to empathize on a deeper level, instead of just hearing about the sadness and depression and attempting to understand. This type of poetry seems to benefit a person's mental health by permitting them to see that it is alright to feel down and upset, but only on the lower scale. If extensive depression and pessimism occurs, additional and sometimes professional help should be searched for.
Due to the fact that we all experience love, this type of poetry is beneficial to the emotional and happy part of a person's thoughts. Love poetry is as old as time, and partaking in it actually helps in the long run. You can look back on those poems that expressed such positive feelings, and sometimes even smile. Even if love peoms are written for that "special someone", they convey a sense of hope for the future and what good things can possibly happen. Having even the possibility of a love interest gives a person with mental health issues like depression and anxiety something to look forward to, and work towards, letting them be productive.
When you have constant random thoughts and ideas swirling around in your brain, it's best to write it down and get it out of the way. What better way to do that then put it in a poem? Many poems don't need a specific structure to be considered poems, so just writing with your heart and mind as thoughts come to pass is great. Random poems also help anyone get a perspective on any ideas and thoughts by wording them differently.
For those people who can write poetry, even while angry, props to you! Anyways, writing poetry while angry lets you cool down so you don't do anything impulsive or in the moment. Much like the other types of poetry, simply writing down thoughts and emotions and venting out negative energy is very beneficial to mental health.
In conclusion, writing poetry, even structured poetry like limericks and haikus, can aid in getting things off your chest, and overall improve your mood. Poetry should be inspired by human emotion and it can also be something to do in your spare time; The options are endless. By all means, do poetry! Improve your mental health and your writing skills.