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7 Steps to Embracing Your Full Story

This may be the least expensive way to solve our health care crisis.

The Traveler

The Traveler - Misty Mawn

To understand one’s own story is, quite literally, to take back one’s own well-being. This well-being is not only physical, but also emotional and social: If we don’t understand ourselves, we can’t really understand others. And if we don’t understand ourselves, we can’t really stand up for our true authority and beliefs. You might think that this sounds good for someone else, but you don’t have a story to tell, or that no one would be interested in your story, or that you are not free to tell your story. If you find yourself thinking those thoughts, I invite you to push back: We all have a story to tell, and all of our stories matter. The renowned social scientist James Pennebaker at the University of Texas has done numerous studies that show the positive health benefits of writing your story. The practice of writing strengthens the immune system, and one study found that when people write about both difficult experiences that happened to them and their emotions around those events, the number of trips those people made to health services decreased by 50 percent. That’s powerful medicine. Think …

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